Asenjo & Manso was founded in 2004 in the village of La Horra of Ribera del Duero. Although the Bodega is young, the wines are amazingly deep and complex due to the 50-100 year old family vineyards. Their production is all organic, with certification to soon follow, and the low yields brought in to the estate are designed for only two wines. Precise and careful practices are carried out in their pristine new facility, and the wines show this loving effort extremely well.
Ted Bennet and Deborah Cahn of Navarro Vineyards have been growing grapes, making wine and producing non-alcoholic grape juices in the Anderson Valley in coastal Mendocino since 1974. The majority of their production has been sold directly to consumers from the vineyards. We are honored to represent these incredible wines with a true sense of people, place and purpose.
Mas des Dames translates as Farm of Ladies. It was christened by current owner Lidewij van Wilgen of Holland upon learning that her three young daughters were the third generation of daughters to be raised on the Mas in recent memory (the farm dates from 1750). Lidewij—Lee to us—abandoned a world of advertising in Amsterdam in favor of the French countryside in 2002. It was an idyllic dream, one she put into play.
The criteria were simple: a small farm with vineyards in walking distance. She found Mas des Dames tucked back on a flank of a hill outside of Murviel-lès-Béziers. Murviel is a forgotten medieval village with narrow, circular streets spreading concentrically outward, and it sits on a point of high ground in the hinterland behind the ancient Mediterranean city of Béziers. The Mas was perfect, and altogether traditional with small vineyard plots planted on contours.
Françoise Le Calvez and her enologist husband Pascal Frissant work their domaine with passion and acumen high in the Mediterranean hinterlands. Their vineyards are in Le Causse and Le Petit Causse, names referring to exposed rock and garrigue and designating the two highest zones in the Minervois appellation. At 750 to 1,350 feet above sea level, these zones have relatively cool nights and the growing season is the longest in the AOC (domaines down on the plain often begin harvesting a full two weeks earlier). The wines from Coupe Roses have excellent acidity and freshness, which Françoise adores, without any plodding, overripe character, which she avoids like the plague.
Chateau Unang is located just outside the pretty village of Malemort du Comtat. When James and Joanna King bought Unang in 2001, there were twenty hectares of vines in various parcels up and down the hillside, and in varying degrees of health. Six hectares of poorly sited and/or diseased vines were torn out, and a new cellar was put in. In 2003, James slowly began to replant, and he plans to grow to eighteen hectares of vines, or a little more than forty-four acres. The white varieties grow farthest down the hillside in the coolest zone, while the reds occupy the mid and upper slopes. What James likes in wine is elegance and depth, and his site enables him to make such wines par excellence. These are high-altitude wines of freshness, vigor and minerality. All grapes are hand-harvested at Unang, and James is working toward organic viticulture.
Nestled smack dab in the middle of Barbaresco country in Piemonte, in a small village called Tetti (commune of Nieve), lies this beautiful estate. In 1974, Luigi Voghera and his wife, Pinuccia, opened up this lovely winery to focus on what their own grapes do best. Luigi has since passed on, but his son Livio has followed in his father’s footsteps to a tee, and does an extraordinary job of making wine from their naturally grown 50 acres of vineyard. From the most well-crafted Moscato that no one realized was out there, to their intense and full-structured Barbaresco, the house of Voghera is a diamond in a sea of jewels.
The Villafañe family has been in the wine business for almost 400 years. In 1611 Don Manuell Villafañe came to Argentina from Spain as a soldier to fight against the English pirates who attacked Spanish ships. Later he settled in South America as a farmer, and became a pioneer of winemaking in Argentina for being one of the first people to plant vines on that land. The objective at that time was to provide wine for the priests of the church and much later for the settlers, who came to the ‘New Word’ to take advantage of the new opportunities.
Made by Maine native Michael Terrien, who has made a big name for himself in the California wine industry. This is Michael’s private label-made more for the white Burgundy drinker. With fruit sourced from Hanzell Vineyards, one of California’s greatest Chardonnay producers. He makes the wine using no malolactic fermentation and very little new oak, then ages it several years before release, allowing its innate crisp intensity to develop layers of flavor and distinctive floral aromas. Terrien is served by top restaurants around the country including The French Laundry.
Eden Orchards and Eden Ice Cider began on a trip to Montreal in 2006 when Albert and Eleanor Leger first tasted ice cider and wondered why nobody was making it on their side of the border. They had dreamed for years of working together on a farm in the Northeast Kingdom; it was a dream that had vauge outlines including an apple orchard, cider and fermentation of some sort.
In April 2007, they bought an abandoned dairy farm in West Charleston, Vermont and got to work. Since then they have planted over 1,000 apple trees, created 5 vintages of Eden Vermont Ice Ciders, and have introduced a new line of Orleans Aperitif Ciders.
Jelly Jar marks a return to early California winemaking, when Italian immigrants crafted food-friendly wines to enjoy around the family table – most often out of jelly jars. Long before Napa Valley became the wine destination we know today, these winemakers planted backyard vineyards and enlisted family members to harvest and crush grapes. As a fourth-generation winemaker, whose roots run deep in the Napa Valley, Andy Pestoni inherited his ancestors’ love of wine and crafts Jelly Jar with profound understanding. He knows how to enhance the unique character of grapes from single vineyard sites he has hand-chosen. And like the wines from the turn of the century, Jelly Jar is a true family endeavor.
Carol Shelton is widely cited as the most awarded winemaker in the United States. She has won countless medals for her wines and has been honored as Winemaker of the Year numerous times. After years of working with some of the industry’s top winemakers and wineries, Carol continues to win awards and accolades for premium Zinfandels produced under her own brand, Carol Shelton Wines.
Saracina Vineyards is a joint project of John Fetzer and his wife, Patty Rock. Working with winemaker, Alex MacGreogr and consulting winemaker, David Ramey, they have created a boutique (5000-case) Mendocino County winery producing Sauvignon Blanc, Petite Sirah, Syrah, Zinfandel and Pinot Noir. Their second brand, Atrea, focuses on Rhone-style blends (Old Soul Red Wine and The Choir White Wine). The wines are sourced from organically farmed vineyards and are note-worthy for their artisanal winemaking protocols and lush California fruit.