The key driver of Cellar Door has been about providing a platform for customer to access unique wines across the world.
I believe that in addition to the terroir, the wines are an expression of and an extension of the wine producer personality.
The many decisions a producer makes in the growing (viticulture) and winemaking (vinification) process can diminish or enhance the expression of the terroir in the wine.
This is one of the reasons I want to run the “meet the producer” sections in the blog (and on our site when we go live), so that you as consumers can learn more about them and their personalities.
As part of a ‘meet the producer’ series I want to introduce our first producer on Cellar Door! There is a special reason behind starting with Dawnine and Bill Dyer.
The concept for Cellar Door was trigged in 2006 when I visited Napa with my brother.
Our first appointment on the first morning of that weeklong trip was at Dyer Vineyards. And people who have done these trips with me know that wine tasting appointments start as early as 9AM!!
Dyer Vineyards is truly a boutique winery and produce no more than 500 cases a year, in fact my brother and I tasted the wines in the living room of the Dyer residence. A “mud” home that the Dyer’s built keeping in line with their approach to sustainable living.
They adopt this same approach of viticulture in their vineyard, as it forms a part of the “front yard” of their home. I could see that philosophy coming through in their wines. These were some of the most superb wines I had tasted, not the “over-oaked Napa’s”, they were the classically styled Napa wines. This was the style of wines that had launched Napa in the world wine map. In a blindtasting you would easily call them out as classed growth left bank Bordeaux. Remember Judgment of Paris? You can always enjoy a nice bottle of wine watching Bottle Shock, a movie based on Judgment of Paris but I digress!!
The Dyer wines really set the benchmark for that trip. We bought a few bottles and I had to get them shipped to my brother’s house in Virginia. I have since managed to bring the bottles to the UK over several trips. In fact, I still have a bottle left in my cellar for a special occasion.
I can go on to wax eloquent about their wines but you will get a chance to decide for yourself when Cellar Door opens for trading. Order a case or a bottle and we would love to hear your feedback on these wines!!
Both Dawnine and Bill have been career winemakers for more than 20+ years and only started Dyer wines in the 1990’s when they planted their vineyard in the Diamond Mountain District (between St Helena and Calistoga).
Currently their wines are made using three classic Bordeaux varieties: 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Cabernet Franc, and 6% Petit Verdot. They used to have a certain proportion of Merlot and Malbec but have realized that on their vineyard Cabernet Franc produces a better complement for their Cabernet Sauvignon.
You can read a bit more about their wines on their website.