Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Harvest Complete in the Vineyards

Harvest is complete in the vineyards and Dutchess is dog tired. Personally, I think she's a bit depressed as she loved hanging with the winemakers. The last fruit arrived in Monday morning-our late harvest Sauvignon Blanc. So the remaining work to do is happening on our crush pad and in our tanks. The winemakers are hard at work punching down and monitoring the fermentation's. Downfall is Dutchess doesn't understand why she can't help and supervise. Dan is now to the point that she can help prep the empty barrels prior to them being filled with wine. She works on cleaning up the water from that process.

As for the the wines in tank-they're really darn good. Dan spends 3-4 mornings a week tasting me through each wine. Worst part of this was a photographer was on the crush pad shooting Dan and I and I really did not want to be filmed spitting. Let me just say-my stomach was far from happy that day. It seems like I should have a favorite for the harvest but not yet-they are all going to be really special in their own way. Dutchess has her favorite-Sauvignon Blanc! Some thing just never change.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Rain and Wine Tasting

Today it's pouring rain and Dutchess' first choice is to be outside and mine is to be home in front of the fireplace. However, reality takes both of us to the winery as there is work to be done. Our first task is checking on the winemakers and status of the wines in tanks usually. Today, Dutchess decided that she needed to stay and supervise-she didn't want Dan or me to go into the office and work. She's a pure Labrador!

What can I say but Dutchess knew something I did not-people would be coming to taste today. She absolutely refused to come into the office-she sat in breezeway waiting to greet everyone. She walked in everyone into the tasting room and would sit by the fire for awhile. Downfall was she was restless and would want to go for a walk every hour! Wet dog, fire place and tasting wine-you can only imagine. People were happy from start to finish today. They were looking for a good time and experience and hopefully, that is what we provided.

I couldn't help but wonder if I would go wine tasting in the rain. I think so with the right people. Sitting by a fire tasting different wine sounds like it's worth braving the rain. One thing I did observe was the fact many of the tasters met new friends in our tasting room. Many ended up going to lunch and other wineries with each other. Sounds like a good day overall on a rainy wine country day.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Maple Zinfandel Being Pressed Off Today

Yes-what you see is the inside of the tank and part of the step that Dan is doing today. First, he pumped much of the juice into the tank and the next step is digging out the tank so he can press off the Maple Zinfandel. I have to be honest, it's a fun time on the crush pad. The smells are out of this world. It's even more fun as they ready the wine to enter the barrels. Just wanted everyone to quickly see what's happening. And no fears, I'm not getting into the tank to shovel unless Dan really needs me because Dutchess would want to help!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

October Harvest Update

Just a quick not to give everyone an update of 2009 Harvest. Zinfandel is due in tomorrow and Saturday (yes, during Oktoberfest so the winemakers will be working). The Saralee Chardonnay arrives Friday and when that happens, all our whites will finally be in house. Wet weather is predicted so Kerry and Dan have made the call to bring in the Estate Syrah and Petite Sirah. Cabernet can handle some moisture so it will stay on the vine for awhile longer. Maybe come Monday we'll be half way through harvest.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Harvest Fair Awards

Harvest Fair awards night last night and Dutcher Crossing received 2 Golds. One for our 2007 Stuhlmuller Chardonnay. Kerry loves this wine and it's his first choice of wine when he comes to the winery. Our second Gold is for the 2006 Taylor Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon-my favorite Cabernet. Yes, it's still a young wine but it will be incredible in a couple years. Unfortunately I missed Awards Night as I was a little sick but Kerry was there and kept me informed of the status via text message. Thanks for the update Kerry and great job to the Dutcher Crossing Winemakers!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Harvest Update

Harvest 2009 update as of September 17, 2009-The Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier are in-just waiting on the Rousanne as it's the final component of the Sauvignon Blanc blend. Part of the Maple Zinfandel has arrived-Irma's Block to be specific. The rest of the Maple fruit will be arriving this weekend and next week. Our Costello Vineyard Chardonnay fruit arrived Tuesday-delivered by John Costello himself. I told him we'd return the fruit if it wasn't as good as the 2008 he brought me. Busy upcoming week as our Maboroshi Vineyard Pinot Noir, Stuhlmuller Vineyard Chardonnay and some of the Maple Vineyard Zinfandel arrives. Stay tuned-off to the crush pad but I'll be back soon.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Good Partners make all the Difference

Two and a half years into being the Proprietor of Dutcher Crossing, it becomes more apparent everyday that I am fortunate enough to have joined forces with the Damskeys. One of my biggest fears was finding the right combination-winemaker and owner. I hit a home run with that but I really hit a grand slam because I have the pleasure of working with Daisy Damskey-the other half of the dynamic Damskey duo too.

There are times within the industry that owners and winemakers don't see eye-to-eye. I don't know if it's an ego issue, creative differences or a combination of many things. Knowing that before I purchased the winery, it was a key factor for the success of the winery that my winemaker and I have a good working relationship with one thing in mind-striving to make Dutcher Crossing Winery and wines the best they can be. I found a good match with Kerry. Heck, my first time meeting him as the future owner, he asked what my goals were for the winery. After filling him in on my philosophy, he stated simply but with a huge smile-"Me too! This is going to be fun!"

Kerry and I hit the ground running-adding new vineyards to our vineyard designate program, planning the replant of our vineyards and developing a comprehensive package for Dutcher Crossing (which is where Daisy shines). Daisy and I teamed up to work on Dutcher Crossing's personality, concept and image. Our goal is to constantly challenge and push ourselves to improve everyday. Kerry keeps smiling during bottling as the wines keep getting better in his opinion-music to this owner's ears! Daisy has been my sounding board and mentor as I work on the Dutcher Crossing package. We are constantly bouncing ideas off each other. She gives me a different perspective on ideas/issues so I have as much information to make decisions. When I have creative thoughts I'm working through and am struck, she's the first one I call.

We've gone through some changes here at Dutcher Crossing-new wines added and the new look. It has been a nonstop adventure at full-throttle. I've had a lot of great experiences already, met a lot of new people but when I stop to think about all that's happened business wise for me over the last 2.5 yrs-I can't help but feel how lucky I am to be working with the Damskeys. Not only do we have a great business relationship and friendship but the Mathys and Damskeys are family. I cherish the past 2.5 yrs and look forward to the future.

Friday, September 4, 2009

First Day of Harvest 2009

First day of Harvest 2009 begins in our Sauvignon Blanc block. Really a great step for us as this is the first taken from the Sauvignon Blanc block we planted in 2007. Came in with 24.5 Brix and nice grassy,citrus flavors and a lovely hint of honey. Our Viognier arrived with similar sugars and incredible floral characteristics. Preston Sauvignon Blanc is at the core of our Sauvignon Blanc program-it arrived through out the morning around 23.5 Brix and having it's great tropical notes showing in the fruit already.

Of course, the first day of harvest can't go perfectly. We had a slight mechanical breakdown with resulted in Wolf climbing on top of the press and shoveling in grapes from the bin Dan held with the fork lift. Good thing it cooled off a bit today and wasn't 106 degrees again.

Next fruit due in is-Maple Zinfandel! Kerry is checking sugars tomorrow and will make the call. Unless something changes-Friday 9/10 the Maple Zinfandel arrives.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Bottling 2008 Stuhlmuller

Sorry for the long delay. Time just got away from me as I have been traveling and in the vineyards. However, I promise to be much better and keep everyone informed during harvest and after.

Today we finished the bottling the last 2008 Chardonnay-our 2008 Stuhlmuller Vineyard Chardonnay. Was this wine a easy road for us this year-not so much. Simply stated, the winemakers like to use indigenous yeast and that made for a slower fermentation and finish to the wine. Kerry and I work closely and make decisions based on what is right for the business as well as the wines. As we were gearing up for bottling at the end of June, he informed me that the Stuhlmuller still had some residual sugar and would be OK if we bottled now but would be better if we waited, finished the wine and bottled in September. No brainer for either of us.

The wine was being cold stabilized during August and was finally prepared for our September 3 bottling. We brought in a different bottling company for this wine-Ryan McGee and we knocked it out. Ryan McGee came in and was extremely efficient. We started with our 375ml bottles (first time we have done splits with any wine other than Port) and polished off the remaining 690 cases of the 750ml by noon. A good day right before harvest starts.

The wine has great color, structure and flavors-winemakers really love this! All of the 2008 Chardonnays are great so stay tuned for when they're released.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Wine and Romance

As I travel back to the USA from Australia, I can't help but ponder the idea of high end reds and screw cap closures. Please don't take this as complaining about Australia or their wines-both were incredible. But traveling with 2 18 yr old girls and this being their first experience drinking wine, made me realize just how different a first time this was compared to mine.

The young ladies asked me my opinion on wine and what it means to me-yikes- as that's a open door and I do always have opinions. Part of the culture for me is the romance that goes along with the product. Part of it is discovering how the wine ages over time. I could go on and on but those are just a few. The girls were loving the screw cap as they, as did I at 18, had little experience with cork screws. It made the wine approachable and far less intimating to them-this is a great advantage to the screw cap closure. I do hope they experience that dates in collage where their boyfriends uncorks a bottle over a romantic dinner. Being young adults from the Midwest, they had a hard time understanding that high end wines come with screw top closures as they associate it with cheap $4-5 wines. Who can blame them! I grew up with the cheap wines being screw top wines too. Some of my fondest memories in college had a cheap wine-that's all I could afford at that time.

In time, I do think they'll realize that the closures will no longer represent the quality of the wines. There generation loves all the environmentally conscientious movements made in the world. Are we sure screw caps are for all wines? I, for one, can't say that. But I do think there is a place for those wines in our lives. I just hope their boyfriends still hold true to tradition and romance and buy cork!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Dutchess Checking the Chardonnay Planting

WE 91pts-2007 Bernier Sibary Zinfandel

Wine Enthusiast Magazine awarded our 2007 Bernier Sibary Zinfandel 91 pts. Check out the August issue to see what they say and unfortunately-we're sold out! Futures are always an option as we received only 6 tons again for the 2008 harvest.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Clone 809 Chardonnay being planted today

The long wait is finally over-our Clone 809 Chardonnay vines are going in the ground. Our vines arrived yesterday and the guys got to work prior to 6am. The crew of approximately 10 guys hit the ground digging. I know I've said this before but watching the planting of the block is fascinating to me. These guys get a rhythm going and they work better than any machine. The block is being planted over 2 days-several thousand vines planted by hand in 12 hours. Good Job guys.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Clone 809 Chardonnay Block Under Way

The long wait is finally over. Our Chardonnay block is finally being planted. The original Cabernet vines were ripped out following the 2006 harvest and the block sat fallow until this year. Why? Several reasons come into play for the extra prep time. Kerry and I approached the replant from all angles. This is something that will be with us for the next 25+ years so we took our time and thought through all options. The Founders of the winery believed we should have replanted with Cabernet Sauvignon to double our Proprietor's Reserve Cab program. Expanding to the volume with that specific SKU would have forced us to start eliminating some of our Vineyard Designate programs which was not going to happen. OK, so we decided not to go the Cabernet route but our original reports we received from the Founders pointed to reds being the logical approach for the replant.

Kerry just wasn't biting on the original report so we had another one reworked. As he expected and had been stating all along, a white varietal was the path we needed to go. Works well for us as we have been developing a PR white concept anyways. OK, so Chardonnay is not the typical varietal to plant up here but it will ROCK. Clone 809 will have a lovely floral characteristic and of course, be a food friendly wine.

For Kerry and I, we firmly believe that we need to plant the correct varietal for the Terroir. We have no need to force something into the land so it fits our program. Our goal is to produce the best wine possible with the best fruit. If all goes well, our vision should be realized with a food friendly wine to be enjoyed with a great meal and good friends.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Our Reds lead the way to Gold

2009 International Eastern Wine Competition released the results this afternoon. 2007 Stuhlmuller took home a Double Gold with 3 of our reds taking gold-2006 PR Cab, 2007 Bernier Sibary Zinfandel and 2007 Maple Zinfandel. Great job done in the field from our grower which supplied my winemakers some incredible fruit to create wine. What can I say but I'm proud of the whole team involved with DCW.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Danny will be out pouring Saturday

Dan Glover, DCW Assistant Winemaker, will be at The Wine Shop (in Healdsburg) pouring our wines on 5/30 from 3-6pm. Stop by, say hi and try some of our current vintages. Who knows, Danny just might have something special with him like the 2007 Bernier Sibary Zinfandel.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Bloom has begun

Great day in wine country today. It's my mom's birthday and bloom has started. So if all goes correctly, the wind will stay away or at least not be as strong as last year so we don't have any shatter. I love this time of the season because if all goes correctly, we'll have great formation for fruit clusters.

Dutchess and I have been watching closely as just patches are in bloom at the moment but we're waiting with great anticipation for the whole vineyard to bloom. So much going on-we're mapping out the blocks to be planted right now as well. But that for tomorrow!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Great Idea for Our Wines

I'm down in SoCal pouring and placing our wines directly into restaurants. I have to tell you that one of the men I poured for gave me a brilliant idea. We have a couple wines in the pipeline that are blends (that's what Kerry does best) and we have been battling what to name the wine. Think the problem is solved! Sometimes you get the best ideas from people you don't know and when you least expect it.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

New Wines score 91pts and 95pts

Our two newest vineyard designate wines have shown quite well right out of the shoot. As you know, we rarely submit the wines to be scored but Kerry wanted to submit them. With that being said, we decided who better to submit to that the Connoisseurs Guide to California Wines. Very well respected for specializing in CA wines. The 2007 Bernier Sibary Zinfandel earned 95pts! During our final blending session, Kerry said off hand that it had the potential to be a 95pt wine-WOW, Good Call Ker. The 2007 Maple Zinfandel "Bill's Block" come out of the gate with 91pts. Congratulations to the winemakers-job well done for your first time working with the fruit. Someone once told me that it take 10 years to understand a vineyard and ten more to understand how to work with the fruit from that specific vineyard. If that's correct, Dutcher Crossing and the winemakers have great things in store for the DCW family.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Sometimes one can only shake one's head.

I spend last night in a round table discussing the wine business and I came away shaking my head. It amazes me at how differently people look at the hospitality business. With the economic issues, many people are traveling more to get their brand out to the public and wineries are participating differently in events. Many of the people I sat across the table from yesterday complained about "having to be on" all the time as well has having to be public 24/7 for the brand. all I thought was COME ON PEOPLE!

We work hard everyday trying to craft great wines and create wonderful wine country experiences-why wouldn't we enjoy bringing them forward for people to partake? In my opinion, some people have lost the understanding that we create a product that goes to the public. It's our public that makes our brand successful. We (as direct to consumer business model or even if one goes through the three tier channels) can't thrive as a business on medals or scores alone. We must want to connect to those who enjoy, sell and represent our wines. Those of us that are open to the public should understand and welcome the commitment we have taken. It's not 100% about the wine solely any more-it's the entire package we offer. I'm proud of the complete package we present and therefore use that in our marketing message. We sell ourselves and the wine to people-how else can we do that but bond with the public on the personal level. If that means traveling and/or pouring at events, I say bring it on!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Passport Week

Passport weekend is approaching quickly and we are trying to ramp things up. With close to 2000 people expected to come thru the doors, the DCW has been hard at work readying the site. Our wines are ready to barrel taste-the 2008 Maple Zinfandel-Bill's Block, 2007 Cooney Cabernet Sauvignon and our newest vineyard, Maboroshi Vineyard Pinot Noir. We selected an incredible cheese to pair with our barrel samples. Our food and wine pairing stations are the focus of the event for DCW. The roasted rosemary grapes have become our signature with our Stuhlmuller Chardonnay so that will be here for sure. With our Sauvignon Blanc, we put a little twist to our shrimp pairing-just a little heads up to those who are attending Passport. The third station has this rockin' lamb dip (OK, so french dip is my favorite sandwich-what can I say but YUM) paired with one of our Cabernet Sauvignon. Inside our tasting room is our newest release-2006 PORT-we'll definitely have something with chocolate to pair with that wine (my mom is in charge of that pairing).

Passport is the Wine Growers of Dry Creek's big event and we happily participate. It allows the valley to show the points that make us unique. We're a valley who grows (and grows well) several different varietals-from Sauvignon Blanc and Zinfandel to Syrah. I'm going to make a very bias comment here but I do believe that we have the most beautiful valley in all of Sonoma. So I hope people come enjoy the scenery, hospitality and great wine. This valley (as with a few others) have the untouched genuine family feeling of what wine country experience use to be 20 years ago.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Hanging with My Winemaker

Just a quick thought for today. Easter dinner with Kerry-had great food and people, interesting conversation and also, Kerry barking with the dogs at the dinner table. Evening ended with Kerry smoking cigars with the guys and when it was time to go-he was sad as he was having too much fun.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Easter Dinner

Easter fast approaches and I haven't figured out the meal. This is going to sound terrible but every menu that I put to paper seems to limit me with the wine I can serve. The weather is absolutely beautiful and a heavy meal don't inspire me at the moment. As for ham, I never seem to hit a home run with that wine pairing. I'm loving the idea of Italian but one of my guests thinks French sounds good. I don't know, the idea of numerous one pot dishes came up. The best part of this day will be the guests. They are the type of people that adore wine and love to explore the unknown in wine. Would like the food offering to allow the possibility to pull some fun wine from the cellar. The best part of wine for me is sharing/experiencing/discovering each bottle with those I love-Easter sounds like the perfect time to pull a few of those special ones.

Monday, March 30, 2009

2009 Bud Break Begins

The 2009 season has begun and ironicly it began in our Viognier rows. Ok. it really should have but it seemed like the perfect place as we lost all of our fruit in those rows due to the turkeys. Just is fitting that the new life begins in that part of our vineyard.

I must admit that I love seeing the new growth this time of year-who wouldn't love seeing the birth of our future wine. This time gives us a jumpstart as we walk into the spring season and gives us almost a feeling that we will be taken on an adventure for the next 6-9+ months. What will 2009 bring us from the vineyards this year? Will we be taken on a roller coaster ride again like 2008 with all the extreme conditions? We had great fruit but the stomach acids were kicked into high gear.

Will this season bring the vast range of conditions as 2008? Who really knows but some farmers in the valley are predicting 1 more hard frost! I really hope not but as one of my neighbors said to me last year-"Welcome to the life of a farmer." One lives, eats and breathes each vintage from the start of bud break to the release of the wine. It's such an ever changing cycle of life with the best part being the final product-WINE!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sea Ranch and our Winemakers dinner

Having arrived back to the winery on this last weekend of March, I couldn't be in a better state of mind. The weather is absolutely beautiful, we're in bud break and Kerry and I had an amazing experience at Sea Ranch Lodge yesterday. What a great location and even more special people.

We started off with sashimi with green apple paired with our 2007 Sauvignon Blanc. It clean and crisp on a warm sunny afternoon looking over the ocean. Kerry and I wished time could have been stopped-perfect wine and food pairing with a serene setting. Our next course consisted of fresh dungeness crab tart paired with our 2007 Stuhlmuller Chardonnay. A rich wine paired with lush seafood-made my mouth water even before I took a bite. As a rule of thumb, Chardonnay needs food for my liking. The crab seemed to accentuate the fruit in the Chardonnay, cutting through the rich buttery characteristic that the Stuhlmuller fans have come to know.

Kerry seemed to hit his his note for the evening between the Chardonnay course and the 2006 Maple Zinfandel. This guy loves life. If he wasn't a winemaker, he could be as successful as a stand up comic! He's happy go lucky and loves to speak about the wines and even better-engages our guests. He's ever the teacher. Seizing the opportunity to explain corked wine and have everyone smell the wine as we had 1 corked bottled and Kerry decided it was a perfect time to educate the masses. This really seemed to get them to another level of discussion during the meal which lead into the Maple Zinfandel pairing.

Our 2006 Maple Zinfandel has a interesting and cleaver food selection-a housemade chorizo Napoleon. This was a home run! The spice in the chorizo highlighted the Zinfandel-making that course the hit of the night! Our next course in the food adventure was prime rib and our 2005 Nevins Cabernet Sauvignon. People were ready for Cabernet and this course hit the spot-showcasing a classic food and wine pairing. Up next was the Palmeri 2006 Van Ness Syrah-matched with a light as air Gruyere Souffle which accentuated the black cherry characteristics of the Syrah. For me, the shining star of the night was the Ginger Chocolate Torte with Cherries. Our 2006 Port harmonized with the fresh ginger cookie-it brought back happy childhood memories of sharing ginger snaps with my dad.

Evening such as this aren't all about the food and wine but as much about the people you meet. I was able to sit next to some of our wine club family, Jim and Mary, and I learned so much. We talked about our food passions and I learned she worked side by side with Ansel Adams. At my table were three ladies that are ambassadors for Breast Cancer Awareness. One is going to release a cloth in the Tibetan way at the top of her climb for me Dad and I'll participate in the next climb for Breast cancer awareness in 2010. People had connections to the Midwest and Daisy ran into someone who knew a childhood sweetheart. Opportunities to have so much laughter and connection with people you met hours prior is quite indescribable for me. People come to these dinners to learn more about the wine, winemaker and owner and it always seems that Kerry and I walk away feeling blessed to work in such a great field and luck to have met new friends.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Pigs and Pinot

The 4th annual Pigs and Pinot happens this weekend at Hotel Healdsburg and Dry Creek Kitchen. Charlie Palmer and many chefs are gathering with some of the world renown Pinot Noir producers for will be quite a not to be missed event.

Several of my close friends tend to be huge Pinot Noir fans and they each claim the opinion on those wines is the one that should be followed. One is not far from staking his life on CA Pinots being superior to OR Pinots. One that discovered French Pinot last year and can't wait to taste the French producer this year. Then we have those that love CA Pinots in general verses the Appellation designate Pinots. I just want to enjoy good wine and discover new wines. What can I say but this will be a lively night at the Grand Tasting at the Hotel Healdsburg. Who will reign supreme amongst our tasting group and how will our panel compare to the experts who decide the Pinot Cup to be awarded this weekend. Stayed tuned for the results.

Events such as this always has a cause on one of the benefactors for Pigs and Pinot is The Healdsburg School. Charlie is a visionary in his own profession and lucky for THS that his vision encompasses other fields. Great cause and great food/wine will make this a rockin' weekend. Events such as this bring out the best in people and brings people together from all walks of life that share a common interest-food/wine and the wine country life style. I love wine, wine country, the people and everything I get to experience on a daily basis. I'm lucky and blessed to have this opportunity and my goal is to figure out a solution so I can share this feeling and experience with everyone I meet.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Food and Wine

Over the past month, I've had the pleasure of meeting the leaders of The Culinary Society of America and learn about their vision and direction. The idea of bringing together people who love food, wine and travel with a concept like facebook or myspace ,in my opinion, is brilliant.

I know I can speak for many of our wine club family in saying at food and wine are two of their passions-ours too. Many of our wine discussions end up veering towards last weekends dinner or what is in the food pipeline this week. Food, wine and the lifestyle are what it's about here. Our challenge now is how to create an atmosphere that unites our club members and all of their shared passion.

Dutcher Crossing joined The Culinary Society of America with their first creation of Culinary Bites. This not only will introduce new recipes, wine but also food and wine pairings. We were thrilled to be included in this project and look forward to sharing the finished results with you.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Continuing Journey

People have been aware that something has been in the works for quite some time and finally, the project was launched. This was not an easy decision but I believe the right one.

I have been asked numerous times what the reason was to
change the image. Simply put, we are evolving as a winery. The Founders laid superb ground work for the winery and it's wine program and we continue to use the fundamental principles from them as we grow. As in everyday life, things progress and move forward. Our family gave the Founding families a promise that we would take care of Dutcher Crossing and guide it during the positive growth for this generation.

That being said, it was a perfect time to unveil a fresh look. Kerry and I have continued to add distinctive vineyards to our wine program over the last 2 years. 2 of those wines have just been released and 2 more will be released during this year. Our winemakers keep improving the wines-which thrills me as well as our consumers. So with the release of the new wines, it was a perfect time to launch the our story and the philosophy of the winery.

What the bicycle represents is simple-the journey that my father and I took into wine country. The actual high wheel bicycle was the last gift from my father. Sadly, he passed away just a few months prior to the purchase of the winery. Our new mark represents our shared passion about the wine industry, our vision to be apart of it and a fathers power to inspire a daughter to chase dreams. My father taught me that if one was going to do something then it should be done right. With that as our philosophy, we continue, under Kerry Damskey's watchful eye, to hand craft our wines and honor the artisan way of life. Our journey continues as we strive to craft premium wines and share in the wine country experience with our friends and family.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Upcoming Release

What is more fun than the anticipation of an upcoming release? Not much else for me. We have 2 new upcoming releases-2007 Bernier-Sibary Zinfandel and 2007 Maple Zinfandel-Bill's Block. Both are Italian field blends, distinctively different and first timers for us. Should I describe them now? I think not as we're just days away from the release so I will let everyone have a neutral mind as they first experience these 2 beauties. I can tell you this that the staff is equally split as to which one is their favorite. Kerry and I rave about each of them every time we drink them.
The one great thing about these wines is it has turned on a few no Zinfandel drinkers to the amazing qualities of Zinfandel. It really is hard not to appreciate the elegance of what Zinfandel should be after one has tried these wines. What's the down fall as there always is a short coming to great things? Our production is limited. I guess that could be a positive or negative depending on one's point of view.
Expect me to write about the fabulous qualities of the wines soon. I'll share with you wine club families view on them as well as the growers themselves( they usually are our toughest critics). Ker and I have as much fun seeing/hearing everyone take on the wines as we do when we drink them.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Wine Club Quote

We just finished a very busy weekend and this is one of the things that stuck out. I was sharing that Wine Spectator scored our 06 PR Zin 91 pts. Alex Leon simply stated, "I'm not your Wine Spectator, I'm your Wine Drinker". I thought it was a classic quote from one of our Wine Club members that had to be shared.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

4 Golds at SF Chronicle Competition

DCW claims 4 gold medals at the SF Chronicle Competition. What an excellent way to start 2009. Our 07 Saralee Chardonnay, 2007 Stuhlmuller Chardonnay, 2006 PR Cabernet Sauvignon and 2005 Taylor Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon received the Golds. What more can be said but we're thrilled!