Native 9 is James Ontiveros’s own label, the name signifying that he is the ninth generation of farmers in California. He is a graduate of California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo with dual degrees in Fruit Science and Crop Science. The Pinot Noir is from his family’s 8-acre Rancho Ontiveros Vineyard, in Santa Maria Valley. The vineyard, which was planted in 1997 and 1998, is part of his family’s 400 acre property. The vineyard contains four different rootstocks and eight different Pinot Noir clones. Paul Wilkins, a college friend and former assistant winemaker at Alban Vineyard in Edna Valley, is the winemaker. Native 9 is made in small lots with a nod to both old world sensibilities and new world stylistic freedom.