Meet the Maker

Tara Gomez and Mireia Tarib贸: Crafting Natural Wines from Catalonia to California

Meet Tara and Mireia, the wife and wife winemaking duo of Camins 2 Dreams bringing the first natty wine to the Maker fam.

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By Sarah Hoffman

May 15, 2022

Tara and Mireia of Camins 2 Dreams holding the Maker Albarino for the first time!

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Through marriage, Tara Gomez and Mireia Tarib贸 of Camins 2 Dreams built a bridge from California to Catalonia. Now, with a Santa Barbara-grown Albari帽o, Maker and Camins 2 Dreams are celebrating that connection with a vibrant white wine that鈥檚 ready to get the party started.

When we first met Tara and Mireia a year and a half ago, we knew we wanted them in the Maker collective. But, as a small start-up winery, they didn鈥檛 have the grapes to spare for a new collab. Grapes or no grapes, these aren鈥檛 women to be deterred, so they got to work. Over the next 18 months, we partnered with Camins 2 Dreams from concept to can as they sourced grapes from a local Certified Sustainable vineyard, went through harvest, and started fermentation鈥攕nagging accolades from Bon Appetit and Food & Wine along the way.

The result is a truly special wine that is a perfect reflection of their style and story. This Albari帽o is native to Spain, Mirieia's home country, and grown in Santa Ynez Valley, home to the Chumash, Tara's tribe. But let鈥檚 not get ahead of ourselves. Tara and Mireia鈥檚 story doesn鈥檛 start with Albari帽o, it starts in a California wine lab.

Tara and Mireia, winemakers at Camins 2 Dreams, on their first day of harvest for the maker albarino.

Mireia and Tara's first day of harvest, picking the Albari帽o!

The California Chemist

When Tara was four, her parents gave her a Fisher Price science set. Looking through her pint-sized microscope, she fell in love with chemistry and the natural world. Going to wine tastings with her parents as a kid, Tara began to put together that wine was a natural process of biology and chemistry too. Even though she was still in grade school, she had seen enough to dedicate her life to wine.

鈥淚 got to see the back-end of winemaking from such a young age. Being so young and stepping into the cellar鈥攖hose memories are still vivid in my mind.鈥 - Tara

When it was time to go to college, Tara was having trouble deciding between two of California鈥檚 premier wine schools: UC Davis and Fresno State. Then, she learned Fresno had its own vineyard for students. The choice was made. With a scholarship from her tribe, Tara attended California State University Fresno where she studied Enology.

Of the 100 students enrolled in her year, 12 women made it to graduation, and Tara was one of only two who finished with a concentration on the actual wine-making process (as opposed to marketing).

Degree in hand, Tara went to work in the labs at Fess Parker and then J. Lohr to help them refine their process. While she knew she鈥檇 find good wine there, she didn鈥檛 expect to find her future wife.

The Catalan kid聽

While Tara was looking at leaves under a toy microscope, another little girl, Mireia, was falling in love with winemaking鈥6,000 miles away.

鈥淢y family has a small vineyard for home winemaking. As a kid, I loved getting into the grapes and foot-stomping them. In my family, there鈥檚 always wine on the table.鈥澛- Mireia

Growing up in Catalonia, Mireia learned to love wine as an integral part of each meal. She also loved chemistry but knew she didn鈥檛 want to spend her life in a lab, so she focused on the study of wine to ensure she could still spend plenty of time in the Catalonian sunshine.

In 2006, Mireia crossed paths with Tara when she took a harvest internship at J. Lohr in Paso Robles. While her job was in the cellar, she had friends in the wine lab, so she visited often. Her friends were happy to see her, but the lab manager, Tara, thought her interruptions were a little disruptive. So Tara put Mireia to work on her passion project: Kalawashaq鈥 Wine Cellars 鈥 her label named for the village of Tara鈥檚 Chumash ancestors. Luckily, it was the same job that Mireia loved doing with her feet as a kid: punch downs.

The two bonded over the work, but soon, it was time for Mireia to return home. They kept in touch and eventually, Mireia convinced Tara to visit her in the Pyrenees mountains to sip Albari帽o in her home country. That trip was just the beginning. 聽

Over the course of several years, dozens of wine trips together, and countless glasses of wine鈥攖he two fell in love.

鈥淲e used all our vacation days to explore the world's wine regions together. Mireia would take me all throughout Europe, from Mosel to Bordeaux, and I took her all over California.鈥 - Tara

California wine, European sensibility聽

The two officially settled in California to marry in 2014. After three years they started their own label Camins 2 Dreams鈥攐r the 鈥減ath鈥 to their dreams as a nod to their love of travel, wine, and each other. More than inspiration for their name, their tasting trips have also informed their winemaking philosophy.

Spain has strict regulations on what can be added to wines, so Mireia was shocked to discover that so many wine additives were allowed in the United States. For Camins 2 Dreams, Tara and Mireia decided on a minimalist approach to production, using only native yeasts to allow the wine to speak for itself and for the land it grew on鈥攏othing added or removed.

The Maker Albari帽o

Which brings us to Maker's first natural wine 鈥 Albari帽o. To Tara and Mireia this can transports them back to R铆as Baixas, the mountainous Catalonian coast where they dined, drank Albari帽o, and fell in love.

Expect floral stone fruit notes, plenty of complexity, and real weight on the palate. Pair this wine with fresh seafood or Mireia's favorite, cottage cheese and honey.

鈥淪ometimes people compare Albari帽o to the riper style of Sauv blanc. It鈥檚 not grassy, but it has the tropical fruit, acidity, and weight similar to a ripe Sauv blanc.鈥 - Mireia

Winemaker Mireia dancing with a glass of Albarino.

If Albari帽o had a personality, she鈥檇 be the first on the dance floor, probably getting down to Spanish rumba.

Under each of our cans, we leave a message that helps capture the inspiration behind the wine. With Albari帽o, we looked to Tara鈥檚 and Mireia鈥檚 trips to the R铆as Baixas, sipping Albari帽o under the green mountains, by the sea.

For them, words can鈥檛 capture that feeling, so they decided to print 鈥渟in palabras鈥 or 鈥渨ithout words鈥 on each can. When you take your first sip, we鈥檙e sure it鈥檒l leave you speechless.

A photo of the bottom of the new Maker Albarino can with the words "Sin Palabras"

Maker 6-pack 2021 Albarino with photo of Tara and Mireia

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