With an internationally successful Schramsberg sparkling wines in production, gaining critical acclaim and recognition, the Davies family began to experiment with other varietals in the vineyards surrounding the winery, simply for the love of winemaking. They were especially interested in finding ways to manage heavy tannins and tight structure sometimes characteristic of Diamond Mountain grown fruit.
In 1994, the first red wine grapes were planted on the estate. Most wineries after planting vineyards will take full advantage to harvest their first grapes within 3 or 4 years after planting, but this was not so with Davies Vineyards. They waited 7 years before releasing their first commercial vintage in 2001. They were not producing wine commercially during this time, as it was merely for their own experimentation and knowledge. Throughout the process, they kept tweaking blocks in the vineyard including layout, types of rootstock, clones and varietals.
Focusing on Burgundian and Bordeaux styled wines – preferring these over the much bigger, more showy, fruit forward wines that you often find in the Napa area, this passion project for the Davies family has resulted in a delicate (and highly acclaimed) Old World-style of wine, with subtle tannins. Within the rugged and intrinsically tannic California climate, this is no small feat. This wine is produced in extremely small quantities and their stock sells out almost instantly.
What began as a passion has turned into a highly collectable and sought-after prize.