To make the
history brief, Jason has been working with wine all his adult life - starting with his Uncle's vineyard in Napa, studying enology at the prestigious University of Adelaide, and then returning to California where he worked for
Jospeh Phelps and Corison amongst others. In 2004 the Drews bought an old apple orchard in the little known Mendocino Ridge appellation, which is about 1200 feet (400 m) above sea level, and just 3 miles from the Pacific. The weather
here is often 10 degrees cooler here than in the Anderson Valley just below, and the whole feel is much more the wild "true Sonoma Coast" (think
Hirsch, Peay, Littorai) than the slightly hippy Anderson Valley.
are good then, but the wines are truly outstanding - despite the fact that all the wines are currently made from purchased fruit, as their own vineyard is not yet in production. Jason says he seeks restraint in his wines, but that is combined with superb structure and balance - so that the proper character of the vineyards shines through. As Jon Bonné put it these are "some of Anderson Valley's most restrained and potentially long-lived specimens, reminiscent of old Littorai and Williams-Selyem from the 1990s." In my book, being
compared to old W-S is fine praise indeed ! Incidentally, one of the Drew wines is made with fruit from the Morning Dew Ranch - the vineyard owned and planted by Burt Williams when he settled in the Anderson Valley in 1998.
All the wines get pretty much the same treatment … 20-35% whole bunch fermented with 'native' yeast, and aged in French oak (20-35% new). The results are rich and flavourful wines, yet lithe and energetic with superb balance. ABVs by the way are between 13 and 13.5%. I really encourage you to try some of these wines while you have the chance - production volumes are low so don't hang about ! Less than 200 cases each of the Morning Dew and Weir Vineyards, and just 336 cases of Fog Eater were made.