Our core belief is that wine is one of the three ingredients in a great meal – along with food and friends – and that in the best meals all three are in balance.
Our approach to winemaking derives directly from our approach to farming: grow what Nature wants to be there, and let it be. That's why the varietals we grow are native to our Mediterranean climate, rather than the more northerly European climates of Bordeaux and Burgundy. Since our varietals are ones that have been selected over hundreds (and, in some case, thousands) of years because they produce great fruit for making wine in this climate, everything works better: we don’t need to fight the vines in the vineyard, and the grapes are balanced when we harvest, so we don’t need to fight the fruit in the winery.
For fermentation, we use the unique native yeasts present on each varietal. Yeast has a lot of flavor, and the commercial yeasts typically used in winemaking taste nothing like native yeasts. Simply put, if you want wine that tastes like what Nature had in mind, go native!
The results are simply amazing: distinctive wines with rich, authentic varietal character, deep complexity, and intoxicating bouquet.
Today, we produce eight Estate wines, all in very limited quantities. Please check our store to see what's available today.
Sagrantino – our flagship, made from one of the world’s great varietals. We’re proud to be one of the few who live outside Umbria (where only 250 acres are planted) to grow this magnificent grape. Sagrantino is a rich, deep wine with a nose like rose petals and blueberries. The strong fruit tannins make for a wine that can be aged for a decade or more.
Sangiovese – Growing alongside Sagrantino on our Hawk Mountain vineyard, where the steep, heavy clay soils produce small amounts of exceptional fruit. A great, versatile food wine that is completely approachable while being remarkably sophisticated.
Barbera – A varietal capable of producing an incredibly wide range of styles. Ours has a rustic quality that works beautifully with rich pastas and grilled chicken.
Dolcetto – Dolcetto means “little sweet one”, and is sweet in temperament (but not a sweet wine) and marvelously drinkable. Think of it like a great rhythm guitar – the quiet support that makes the band sound fantastic.
Pinot Nero – we planted this Italian pinot clone as an experiment, fully expecting to replace it after a few years. But it has exceeded our wildest expectations, producing a rich, incredibly complex wine that is frankly more reminiscent of a great Burgundy. Who knew?!
Carignano – We truly lucked out when we discovered a tiny vineyard in Mendocino county that's been in the same family for four generations. The vines are head-pruned, farmed organically, and are over 40 years old. Carignano (in Italy; lots of other names around the Mediterranean) at its best is lush, deep, and amazingly food-friendly. And this vineyard produces Carignano at its best.
Sangiovese Rosato – we make this from scratch as a rosé, picking just one ton of fruit several weeks earlier than the rest of the Sangiovese. The natural yeasts work their magic, producing what we like to think of as “a red wine that’s pink” – subtle yet deep, layered nose and flavors, fine as an aperitif but at its best with rich foods like foie gras, or even Thanksgiving dinner!
Malvasia Bianca – one of the first varietals to be cultivated (in ancient Greece), Malvasia quickly spread throughout the Mediterranean. It’s incredibly happy in our Valladares Vineyard, producing a dry wine with a delightful nose and bright flavors that make it spectacular with fish or a light dinner salad.
Moscato d’oro – oh, did we luck out on this one! The natural yeasts growing on our Moscato allowed us to produce a completely dry after-dinner wine with a nose so seductive it makes you want to climb into the glass. Unlike any other wine you’ve ever had and one you will long remember, especially if you have it with some perfectly-ripe triple-crème cheese.