Blends November 29, 2016 09:57


Blends dominated before varietals were introduced in the 1960’s Now they are coming back into popularity in the USA.

Varietals are a delightful pure expression of a grape variety. Blends are often the expression of the winemaker that go beyond the characteristics of one grape. Blends are not better nor worse than varietals, just different.

 Three ways of creating a blend.

 1. A Cellar Blend is made in the winery. Different varieties are first made into a 100% varietal wine. A varietal wine is then mixed with others by the winemaker to create the blend. The winemaker is in control There are no restriction on what varieties or how much go into a blend. Different formulas are mixed in the lab and then tasted to see what is the BEST.  Examples of my cellar blends are Cotes-du-Dry Creek, Lucia, C2 & C3 Understanding the characteristics of my 8 grape varieties I put them together in a way that they will contrast and compliment. Fruit with tannin. Earth with acidity. Leanness with richness.

 The process of creating a cellar blend. Each glass contains a different percentages of the base wines.

 2. A field blend is made in the vineyard (field). It is created by planting different varieties mixed together in the same vineyard plot. This was the common way to grow wine 100 years ago. All varieties are handled the same, harvested together and ferment together so you have many grape varieties, one wine. Example of my field blend is Garibaldi.

Freshly harvested GARIBALDI. 10 grape varieties (red & white) are in this bin.

3. In a Co-fermented Blend different varieties are harvested separately from their individual vineyards then brought to the winery, crushed and in the winery fermented together. I do not use this technique because my varieties do not ripen at the same time.

COTES-DU-DRY CREEK, my signature blend comes as RED and WHITE wine.