We are sure you are tired of hearing all about covid-19 and social distancing. We are right there with you and are hopeful that this post finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy. These are sad and uncertain times that we are living in, and can’t stress how our hearts go out to all those that are ill or have family members that are sick as well as the front line medical staff treating patients. Although Dracaena Wines can’t do anything to help those that are effected, we are doing our part to stay inside and keep the six foot recommended distance when we are outside.
The small size of Dracaena Wines has many positives, like allowing Michael and myself (Lori) to be actively involved in every aspect of the wine making process. We are the ones making decisions that will impact our final product beginning in the vineyards and continuing all the way to the bottle. It is us, who is behind the social media accounts, every email response and the ones pouring our wines at tastings. Our wines are our children, and we take pride and care in every aspect of them. But along with the positiveness of being small, the biggest negative is that while everyone is talking on social media about helping out by supporting local, in reality most are talking about supporting wineries they have already tasted and now are without a tasting room. It is difficult for us to get our wines into customers’ hands (or mouths.)
Typically, we would be spending these months attending wine events, pouring our wines and talking to potential customers. Once they taste our wines, they recognize the quality and very often purchase. This is how we have sold out every previous vintage. But with every event being cancelled, we have no way of introducing our wines to customers. Although we can’t be out pouring our wines, we are so grateful for those who are pouring our wines in their homes and sharing their photos with us, or sending us emails. We know these times are tough on everyone and we hope that our wines are making it a little easier to make it through what has become the new normal.
The days may be passing slowly, but they are indeed passing and life must move forward. During this time of isolation, we have received some incredible news. Dracaena Wines has a history of consistent 90+ ratings and that trend has continued with our 2017 Classic Cabernet Franc. Last week, we received a wonderful email informing us that we received a 92, and earlier this year our accrual of medals increased with our 2017 Reserve Plummer Vineyard Cabernet Franc being awarded double gold again.
Helen Keller once said, “Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow.” While we are looking into the sun for better days for all ahead, we have been doing what we can to help the community by purchasing new to us wines and supporting a new local restaurant to take out from each week. We sit in our driveway and wave to neighbors that drive by or yell to those sitting in a driveway across from us.
However, as we sit at home and wait, we are not sitting idle. The winery’s flagship is and will always be Cabernet Franc, however, three vintages ago we introduced our Rosé of Syrah from the El Pomar district in Paso Robles. For the 2020 vintage, we have some very exciting news. Dracaena Wines will be introducing our first white wine.
When it comes to a winery that loves Cabernet Franc as much as we do, we felt that we needed to choose a white varietal that complimented our beloved grape. We chose the white grape variety that lives alongside Cabernet Franc in the Loire Valley – Chenin Blanc.
Depending on the climate it is grown, Chenin Blanc is extremely variable. In cooler regions, you will typically see a wine that is more acidic, while those in warmer climates will be fuller bodied. Chenin is known for its appealing floral aromas and its flavors can range between apples and minerality and honey to even tropical fruits.
More exciting news, is that for the first time our fruit will not be coming from the Paso Robles AVA. We love Paso Robles, but for our Chenin, we wanted to go to a wine region that was born for Chenin Blanc. Jancis Robinson wrote “A truly great Chenin Blanc is the product of a hazy autumn on the schists of the Loire” and Gerald Asher of Gourmet wrote an essay about Chenin Blance titled “The right grape in the right place.”
So we headed north, to a somewhat relatively less known region in California’s Sacramento Delta. A region, whose tributaries and soil composition share so many similarities with the Loire Valley, that Chenin Blanc is a natural choice to grow there. We will be harvesting our Chenin from the Clarksburg AVA. Chenin Blanc thrives in the mild weather of Clarksburg. Wind and fog from the San Francisco Bay moderate the climate.
We are excited to be taking this step forward; increasing our production and expanding our portfolio and look forward to days that once again we can be behind a table pouring our wines for your enjoyment and talking directly with our customers. Our scores and medals prove that the professionals love our wines, but it is truly your opinion that matters the most to us. There is no feeling quite like watching a smile appear on someone’s face after tasting our wines and we know that the smiles will be just as big with our Chenin Blanc.
Our Wines + Your Moments = Great Memories.
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