There is much to be thankful for in the last year. First and foremost we survived the end of the world according to the Mayan calendar (phew). More important was the tremendous support and recognition for the wines over the past year. While we are never big on the Top 10 roundup, we made a list of the hallmark moments for Meteor Vineyard in 2012.
Meteor Vineyard Top 10 of 2012
1. Coombsville became Napa Valley’s 16th AVA. The news broke December 2011, but it truly became “official” in January 2012. What’s the big deal? Coombsville is a longtime winemaker secret, having provided fruit for some of Napa Valley’s most lauded wines. Now the secret is out with estate grown wines from the region dominating conversations about Napa Valley.
2. “Generation Next: Cult Cabs in the New Millenium”. We were incredibly excited to be a part of the panel “Napa’s Generation Next: Cult Cabs in the new Millenium” at the 2012 Pebble Beach Food and Wine event alongside such lauded names as Scarecrow, Dana Estate, Ovid and Futo!
3. Epic multi city Meteor Vineyard “Vertical Tour”. The entire Meteor Vineyard team joined forces in the spring for a vertical tasting tour for nearly 500 Meteor Vineyard fans. Even cooler was where they took place; Tumblr HQ in New York, Soho House in Los Angeles and The George Town Club Washington D. C.
4. The magnificent 2012 vintage. Everything you have heard is true – the 2012 vintage was SPECTACULAR.
5. Interactive Coombsville Map. We have always enjoyed the slight kitsch quality of the illustrated maps you see in souvenir shops around the world. We used this foundation to design an interactive map of Coombsville exploring the wineries and attributes that make the new AVA unique and distinctive.
6. New Website. If you haven’t visited the site in a while check it out; from critics reviews to our social media activity, from purchasing our current releases to learning more about past vintages, it’s all here.
7. Events, Events, Events. In 2012 we took part in some of the hottest food and wine events and wine auctions in the US including; Auction Napa Valley, Sun Valley Wine Auction, Jackson Hole Wine Auction, Pebble Beach Food and Wine, Los Angeles Food and Wine, Heart’s Delight Wine Auction, Cabernet for Connoisseurs and many others.
8. New Distribution Markets. As acclaim for the Meteor Vineyard wines has spread we have many fans across the country asking where they can get them in their local markets. In 2012 we garnered new distribution partners in a number of states including New York, Pennsylvania, Colorado and Texas. In the coming months look for the wines in a couple of additional markets including Florida, North Carolina and Georgia.
9. Meteor Vineyard’s resident chef (and owner) Barry Schuler’s Thanksgiving extravaganza. A photo essay captures it all.
10. Critical Success. While we have always made wine for ourselves (and in a style we love) we are continually heartened by the praise from professional wine critics.
Now what? Our 2009 Special Family Reserve will be released late March 2013 followed by the release of our 2010 Perseid in September – mark your calendars! In between we will be taking part in events ranging from Cabernet for Connoisseurs to the Staglin Music Festival. Check out our events page for details!
We wish you an exciting and bountiful 2013.
The Meteor Vineyard Team
It is no secret that the last three vintages we released are absolute stunners. Revisiting the wines over the recent Thanksgiving holiday we were struck by the clarity of vintage expression in each wine. The 2007 vintage captures that combination of richness and structure that made the vintage (justifiably) famous. 2008 continues to be overly precocious, with a seamless combination of aromatics, richness on the palate and supple well integrated tannins. 2009 is the baby of the group melding the intensity and structure of 07 with the 08's aromatic complexity. We keep hearing from Meteor fans that they are waiting to pull the cork on the wines as they age gracefully in the cellar. This is a perfect opportunity to taste three vintages of what Wine and Spirit's Patrick Comiskey refers to as "Coombsville's Cru" side by side!
We are excited to offer a limited number of three bottle Meteor Vineyard Perseid vertical packs containing one bottle each from the 2007, 2008 and 2009 vintages packaged in a custom wood box. The perfect gift to yourself (if you've been good) or for wine loving friends. Free shipping on orders placed by Sunday December 9. Wines to ship December 11. Click here to place your order.
The entire Meteor Vineyard team wishes you and your family the happiest of holidays!
P.S. The Meteor Vineyard wines are sold at many of the nations top restaurants including Daniel Boulud's Daniel in NYC, Thomas Keller's French Laundry in Napa Valley, Gary Danko's eponymous namesake in San Francisco and Robert Gel Gado's Cafe Annie in Houston. Check out the full list of restaurant partners here and celebrate the holidays with Meteor at your favorite!
A perfect late Autumn day for Thanksgiving 2012.
The day always starts with baking. Everything I make for Thanksgiving is strictly from scratch - is there any other way?
The menu is planned and iterated throughout the week. I actually start cooking on Monday. to get a jump.
This year will feature two Heritage House birds around 18 lbs. They are very flavorful but require special care in cooking. One will be braised lightly. The other spatchcocked and grilled. Both brined and rubbed. One spicy. One hot.
The whole bird in its sauna-like braise.
The Spatchcocked Turkey was amazing.
A sampling of the dishes and wines.
A happy crowd.
Me striking my best Iron Chef pose.
And the best part of Thanksgiving: the next day. I bake a special rustic country white bread for this.
Well "hammer" may be a bit excessive but we island hopped last week sharing a vertical selection of the Meteor Vineyard wines with both sommeliers and collectors.
I have really enjoyed watching the food and wine scene explode here over the last couple of years.
On Maui restaurants like Spago at the Four Seasons Wailea, the Lahaina Grill (ask for Richard Olson - one of my favorite sommeliers anywhere in the US) and Merriman's (which has one of the world's most spectucular views) continue to carry the banner of fine dining, with local fish and produce offering a taste of the Island. Oahu's standard bearers like Alan Wong's and La Mer at the Halekulani continue to wow and soon to open Vintage Cave promises to make the high end dining scene even better. Round that out with places like Wolfgang's Steakhouse, BLT Steak and Michel's and you have enough serious food and wine to pack in a week!
And you absoutley CANNOT go to Oahu without delving into both local food (Ono Hawaiian Foods) and poke (Ono Seafood - different place but right accross the street from Oho Hawaiin - will change your life) as well as the incredible range of Japanese food that surpasses anything else in the US. Gaku, Nanzan Giro Giro, Khanatori absoutley kill it.
In terms of wine retail stores - a couple that I love; Wailea Wine in Maui, which our friend Ed Mikesh just purchased from longtime owners Alan and Diane Beaurline, and HASR Wines in Honolulu - one of the greatest collections of Premier Napa Valley wines anywhere!
We have already received great acclaim for the 2010 vintage. After nearly 2 years in barrel (65% new french oak - as usual) the wines are finally headed into bottle to rest for the next 11 months (16 months for the Reserve). Look for the release in the fall of 2013!
2010 Meteor Vineyard Perseid Cabernet Sauvignon
“Good bright, medium ruby. Lovely aromatic nose features blackberry lifted by violet and spices. Darker than the 2009 version and more muscular too, offering an impressive combination of power and finesse. Very ripe black fruit flavors are perked up by juicy acidity. Finishes with terrific grip and lingering sweetness. Dawnine Dyer notes that 2010 produced bigger wines. Yes, there were heat spikes in late August and late September, she said, but the harvest here didn't even start until October 10.” Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar
2010 Meteor Vineyard Special Family Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
“Good dark ruby-red. Very pure aromas of cassis, violet, licorice and minerals. Powerful and primary, with a strong mineral quality to the rich, sweet dark berry flavors. Easier to taste today than the Perseid owing to its sheer lushness and sweetness. But very powerful for this bottling. The clone 7 is the source of the minerality in this wine, notes winemaker Dyer. A great California cabernet in the making.” Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar
It doesn't matter where you are in Napa Valley at the moment - everyone is talking about the 2012 vintage. A bountiful fruit set in the spring was followed by even temperatures throughout the summer leading to perfectly proportioned fruit. Winemakers and vineyard managers are almost giddy with excitement.
I walked the vineyard this morning and noted just a couple of rows of fruit remaining from a vineyard client taking advantage of a couple more days of warm temperatures for a tiny burst of increased ripeness.
Here is some Clone 337 still hanging...
Can't wait to taste the wines post fermentation!
Meteor Vineyard Perseid Cabernet Sauvignon marries the elements of our clonally diverse planting in one singularly expressive wine. Meteor Vineyard is a collaborative project of vineyard proprietors Barry and Tracy Schuler and longtime Napa Valley winemakers Bill and Dawnine Dyer. Located on a knoll in Napa Valley’s Coombsville appellation, our unique combination of elevation, aspect and stony, rich volcanic soil produces some of Napa Valley’s most distinctive Cabernet Sauvignon. The seamless combination of richness coupled with balance, purity combined with structure makes 2009 truly distinctive.
100% Cabernet Sauvignon
40% clone 7, 39% clone 4, 21% clone 337
100% French Cooperage, 65% New (Blend of D &J, Fouquet and Taransaud)
From the Vineyard – 2009 was a low rainfall year with most precipitation coming in the spring. This pattern was perfect for the vineyard and provided ample moisture for the growing season. Bloom and set were a little late but dodged the spring rains. Overall 2009 was a mild growing season. Some concern for a late harvest prompted extra care in thinning and multiple passes were made. The end of the season was punctuated by 10 days of welcome heat in early October and the fruit came in mid October under excellent conditions. Mike Wolf, Vineyard Manager
From the Winemaker – Our 2009 Perseid is deep garnet in color with a saturated opaque blue rim. Complex and exuberant aromas of ripe blackberry, violet and cloves meld with sweet tobacco and currant leaves. The palate explodes with a combination of red and black fruit, dark chocolate and spice leading to a finely balanced finish. Powerful and silky. Dawnine Dyer, Winemaker
From the Sommelier – The magic of the 2009 vintage lies in its combination of concentration and balance. The long cool growing season allowed for slow ripening and intense flavor development while retaining acidity and mature silky tannins. This vintage will reward cellaring. Jason Alexander, Sommelier and General Manager