Chateau Luzon is the name given by a neighbor to Scott MacDonald’s contemporary home on Luzon Avenue in Del Mar, CA. Built in 1995 by award winning developer and archetect, Batter Kaye, the Luzon home is a modern home of exposed concrete, dramatic big windows, and multiple levels. It sits on top of a hill with views overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
In 2014, Scott planted a mini vineyard of chardonnay vines on the slope in front of the house. Only 60 feet by 10 feet, the mini vineyard serves as an innovative and scenic foreground to the dramatic house behind.
The concept of a home vineyard is consistent with water conservation goals. With strictly controlled drip irrigation, only the vine roots receive water. As the vines become established, less water is provided so the vines struggle to make the best quality grapes. If sun and soil conditions are favorable, home vineyards are far better than grass and other water intensive landscaping and are likely comparible with widely used draught tolerant vegetation. A vineyard in the front yard has far greater asthetic appeal than dessert plantings.
The vines are finishing their
first second growing season, and continuing to show good health and vitality. Grapes are expected for harvesting after the third growing season. At that time, the grapes will be crushed, fermented, stored, and subsequently bottled. If current plans are achieved, Chateau Luzon chardonnay will be available in 2017 or 2018.