"We are blessed with an incredible range of soil and topography, ranging from steep hillside to valley floor."
Our vineyards are all small, and surrounded by open space and woodland to foster biodiversity and promote the overall health of the farm.
Each block has its own distinct terroir, and is best suited to particular varietals.
And they're all planted to Mediterranean varietals; here's why...
Hawk Mountain Vineyard
Our first vineyard, located at the top of our home farm, is steep with heavy clay soil and a northeastern exposure, making it ideal for producing small quantities of intense fruit. We named it after the town of Montefalco (literally, "hawk mountain") in Umbria, the sole place in Italy where Sagrantino is found.
We planted Sangiovese in 2000, on a combination of 110R and 3309 rootstocks, from which we started making wine in 2004. Then in 2005 we grafted the middle 60% of the vineyard over to Sagrantino.
Today, Hawk Mountain is the source of our incredibly complex Sagrantino and elegant Sangiovese. In a strong year it yields just 2 tons of fruit to the acre.
While Hawk Mountain is our primary vineyard on the Home Farm, there's also a small block of Pallagrello Bianco near the house, and a new, 2-acre vineyard on the upper bench that will soon be planted to [redacted]. Stay tuned...
In 2008, we were fortunate to be able to acquire a 16-acre property nearly adjacent to our home farm.
We named it after the man who is the backbone of DaVero, farm manager Juan Valladares. Juan has guided our farms from the very beginning, living on the home farm where he has raised his family as we have raised ours.
This new property showed the effects of 40+ years of neglect and abuse from chemical farming, but we dug in (literally) and have brought it back to life. It is home to vineyard, olive groves, fruit trees, amazing vegetable gardens, and our herd of heritage pigs and their chicken companions.
We planted 5-1/2 acres to Moscato, Malvasia Bianca, Barbera, and Pinot Nero in 2009, where possible grafting onto old rootstock that showed promise, with the balance onto new 110R rootstock.
The first wines emerged from the 2012 harvest, showing depth and quality that gave us the courage to plant the remaining 3-1/2 acres in 2014 to 1616C rootstock; they're now the source of our Impossibile field blend, our Greco/Fiano orange wine, and our stealth white, Pallagrello Bianco.
The Valladares Vineyard is also where you'll find our winery and Club Member lounge. We invite you to schedule an appointment to visit so you can sample — and learn about — everything we make.
In parallel with the development of our farms, we have actively sought out other like-minded growers in the area, with whom we forge long-term relationships that ensure their economic and agricultural sustainability. We feel incredibly lucky to be able to partner with these small, hands-on growers who think like we do.
Testa Family Vineyards
The Testa property lies in the wide spot in the road known as Calpella up in Mendocino county, about 50 miles north of us. Established in 1912, it has stayed in the family now for five generations. The property feels old.
Within it there is a small, 1-3/4 acre block of very special Carignano. The vines, planted in the 1960s and farmed organically from the outset, are head-pruned and the yield is on the low side (two tons per acre in the best years). But the fruit is just incredible, producing a wine of incredible depth and complexity.
Schatz Family Vineyards
We stumbled across this vineyard in the Consumnes River Valley completely by accident, and were smitten with the Vermentino they grow. Its varietal characteristics are spot on to taste of the old world — proof that California’s Mediterranean climate extends far beyond our farm in Dry Creek Valley.
We are delighted to be able to get our hands on a few tons each year.
Treborce Vineyard is located on the eastern bench of Dry Creek Valley. It was founded in the 1980s by Bob and Joyce Littel, who farm it as passionately today as they have from the beginning, with intimate knowledge of each vine and block. At our behest, they have begun Biodynamic certification, lending even greater promise to the wine we make from their amazing Primitivo.
Limit Down Vineyard
Located across Dry Creek Valley from Treborce, the Limit Down vineyard could not be more different. Just 2 acres in size, it is planted in a steep, west-facing natural bowl surrounded by mature firs. The Block family has been kind enough to let us have all of the fruit (a Primitivo-heavy classic Dry Creek field blend), and with our help is farming biodynamically.
The Herrick family has farmed a beautiful piece of land along the Russian River for generations, planted to typical varietals. But nestled literally in the middle of the vineyard are just a few rows, totaling four tenths of an acre, planted to Dolcetto. Just a five minute drive from our farm, it's a great location for that varietal, as the wine consistently shows.
We also source Dolcetto from Jim Pratt's Cornerstone Vineyard, which is located in Occidental in the Russian River AVA. We love the spiciness it brings to our red Daily Drinker!