By Lisa Gale Garrigues
The wine and olive oil are already on the market, and the tribe has plans to expand the brand to organic food by next year, says Jim Etters, director of land management for the tribe. Séka is the Patwin word for “Blue,” which describes the hills in the tribe’s ancestral lands in the Capay Valley of Northern California.
The tribe is the owner of the Cache Creek Casino near Sacramento as well as 11,000 acres of farm and ranch land in Yolo County, California.
A Viognier white, a Tuluk’a cabernet/Syrah blend, and a Rose of Syrah are currently being grown and harvested on 1500 acre of vineyard. The Viognier won the Best of Class Award at the 2011 California State Fair, in which 2,600 wineries from all over California competed, as well as the Gold Medal for 2012 Consumer Wine Awards in Lodi, California. It has aromas of orange blossoms, jasmine and honeysuckle, with tropical fruit flavors like mango and lychee, and a hint of vanilla.
Below: "Marshall McKay, tribal chairman of the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation, with the tribe's new olive oil at the Seka Hills Brand Launch at Mulvaney's B&L restaurant in Sacramento." (By Lisa Garrigues)