More and more winemakers in the True Sonoma Coast are exploring the parameters of the possible. These six producers are the trailblazers of the region, bringing together Old World balance and Californian dynamism.
Dynamic duo Duncan Arnot Meyers and Nathan Lee Roberts craft one of California’s most compelling Syrahs from their Que Syrah Vineyard, the oldest and coolest planting of Syrah on the True. Their Clary Ranch Syrah and Coastlands Pinot Noir are stunning too.
Enfield Wine Co
After five years at Ehren Jordan’s Failla, John Lockwood struck out on his own, and the results are already impressive. His flagship wine, a brooding and complex Cabernet Sauvignon from the Pinot Noir heartlands of Fort Ross-Seaview, exemplifies the dynamism of the True Somona Coast.
Brothers Nick and Andy Peay work with winemaker Vanessa Wong to produce cellarworthy, savoury Pinot Noir and Syrah – as well as beautiful Viognier – from their rugged Estate Vineyard, which was planted in 1998 in the remote Annapolis outback.
Softly spoken Eric Sussman’s time in Burgundy seems to inform his classical sensibility. Working with vineyards on the True including Charles Heintz and Platt, Sussman produces deliciously complex and savoury Pinot Noir and Syrah, vibrant Chardonnay, and one of California’s best Rieslings.
Carlo and Dante Mondavi, charismatic grandsons of the late Robert Mondavi, founded RAEN (Research in Agriculture and Enology Naturally) in 2013. Working with fruit from vineyards located in Freestone and Fort Ross-Seaview, their sappy, concentrated debut releases show promise.
Winemaker Thomas Brown’s Summa Vineyard is one of the most distinctive terroirs on the True, and it’s the source of stunningly perfumed Pinot Noir. His Chardonnay from the Thieriot Vineyard across the road would give many good white Burgundies a run for their money. Perhaps no one else has come closer to assuming pioneer Burt Williams’ mantle in the True.