As some of you may know, at the beginning of June this year we released our 2012 Lake County Malbec. For those of you who have not been able to give it a try, make sure to come by the winery to experience this vintage that loves the Lake County altitude! Some may remember that last year we did not have a 2011 Malbec. We know that many of our 2010 Malbec lovers from the year before were disappointed to not see it back. The industry can be tough when it comes to getting the fruit needed to produce quality wines year after year. However, after a year of no Malbec, we are excited to say it’s back and better than ever! After the 2010 vintage received double gold at the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition we are happy to have the 2012 Malbec back and ready to please once again. This vintage is from two different Lake County vineyards in the Red Hills AVA, consisting of 7% Petite Verdo. It was aged in oak for a total of 16 months with 30% in new American oak and 70% in two year old French oak. It is a true French Bordeaux style Malbec with layers of blueberry, fig, and currant. With a spicy French oak core and a rich, lengthy finish, this 2012 Malbec has taken off since its release in early June and we are excited to see what else it has in store.
On June 11th the Lake County Wine Competition was held at Brassfield Estate Winery where Lake County wines were blind tasted by two panels of judges. Results are in, and we are thrilled to say that Chacewater’s 2013 Sauvignon Blanc received Best White Wine in Lake County! Not only did our Sauvignon Blanc impress the palettes, but our 2011 Petite Sirah and newly released 2012 Malbec received silver medals for red wines. The 2012 Organic Chardonnay and 2012 Riesling received silver medals in the White Wine category. Bronze medals were awarded to our 2013 Organic Sauvignon Blanc, 2012 Chardonnay, and 2012 Limited Edition Dry Riesling in this competition. Making it an overall success at this year’s Lake County Wine Competition.
In other news, our 2011 Syrah is a hit! Receiving a score of 92 in the Wine Enthusiast! This is a great wine, and will go faster than we would like. For this reason, the Syrah is on allocation, with a two bottle maximum. For more information on this Syrah and its score of 92, check out the August 2014 issue of Wine Enthusiast coming soon!
Earlier this month we sent our wine to the Orange County Commercial Wine Competition. Results are in, and we came out with four gold medal wines! The 2011 Petite Sirah, 2011 Sierra Foothill Merlot, the newly released 2012 Malbec, and the 2012 Chardonnay were all gold medal winners, and we could not be more delighted with those results. We are having a great year and eager to continue to provide you with quality wines to enjoy with loved ones, friends, and family.
For those of you who haven’t been able to attend the Club parties or are new to Chacewater, a little news about the past year. We have increased our Club members to upwards of eight hundred this year. That is an increase of six hundred new Club members in just over a year! We here at Chacewater view this as one of our biggest success for the 2013 year. Club membership gives us flexibility not to depend on large scale distributors, which gives us an edge in both the amount of feedback we get from our consumers, as well as freedom for our winemaker. For the New Year we plan on keeping the Club a major focus for Chacewater.
This past year we had great success in the market place. Distributors like Mountain Peoples, our largest organic distributor in California, has been placing our wines in the “Mom and Pop” organic stores up and down the coast. While Nick Kurihara of Wanderlust Wine Company has been focusing on Southern California. Nick has been successful in getting placements of Chacewater wines at 4th Street Vine in the newly renovated Long Beach Airport terminal, Crustacean Restaurant in Beverly Hills, Oscar Cerveteca in Venice Beach, Bedford and Burns in Beverly Hills, Cafe Pinot in Downtown LA, and Le Cellier in Marina del Rey to name a few. Nicks focuses on wine by the glass programs, and has lead Chacewater into the prestigious restaurant venues of Southern California.
While in college Luke Manuel helped bring Chacewater to the East Coast. Business was slow at first, as a wholesaler, until a vendor introduced him to Red Ink Distribution. The owners of Red Ink Distribution Domenico and Jay were impressed with Chacewater’s wines enough that we were their first domestic label that they carried. Since then Red Ink has done a fantastic job representing us in the Washington DC and Southern Maryland. They continually increase the amount of stores that carry our wines. Chacwater wines may now be found in some of our nations capital’s most historically significant wine shops. Gathering Harvests distribution in Connecticut also started distributing Chacewater after tasting our wines and connecting with our brand. Donna Pace, owner of Gathering Harvests has created an excellent demand for Chacewater. After graduating from American University Luke moved to Arizona where he and his brother Alex became licensed distributors, known as Manuel Brothers Distributing. They continue to have success placing our wines into exclusive restaurants and wine shops throughout Arizona.
In 2014 we are increasing our production of wine by a third from six thousand cases to eight thousand cases annually! This growth is due to the success of our Club members and distributors doing a wonderful job. After two consecutively difficult vintage years 2010, and 2011, the 2012 and 2013 years have been exceptionally good. Increasing our confidence that the wine will continue to improve.
The 2013 vintage in particular, allowed us to harvest fruit at optimum quality, because of the relatively mild summer conditions, and the lack of early fall rain, allowed the fruit to get extra hang time. This hang time increases maturity and flavor development. The 2012 reds are going to be bottled in the next few months and the quality looks stellar! The 2013 Sauvignon Blanc and dessert wines are going to be in the bottle in mid-February and are tasting great. We will be releasing these wines in March.
Matt Manuel has done a fantastic job managing the vineyards. Four new acres of Cabernet Sauvignon are being planted in the Sierra Foothills. Matt has already put in stakes and end posts, he is just waiting on the bench grafts this spring. After apprenticing under Emilio for just a year, Matt is also running the olive mill during the off season. Giving Emilio some much needed rest as well as a helping hand.
In 2013 the olives trees were in an alternate bearing year. Last January we aggressively pruned the trees to promote positive growth for the future; we do this every other year. This created a smaller harvest year for 2013 (10 tons of olives) as compared to 2012 (14 tons of olives), which means 2014 should have a higher yield. The quality of the olive oil produced in 2013 is wonderful! In fact we are already pouring some of these new 2013 olive oils in our tasting room. Look for the Blood Orange Infused Olive Oil and the Tuscan blend.
We are also happy to announce that the olive oils produced in the current 2013 harvest season passed the California Olive Oil Council (COOC) Certification Seal for “Extra Virgin Olive Oil” labeling. Chacewater has been a proud member of the COOC since 2010. Having our oils go through lab analysis and sensory evaluation to get a ” high quality” product status. The tests consist of a lab analysis: free fatty acid test, ultraviolet absorption, and peroxide value test along with a COOC tasting panel, which evaluates the olive oil to ensure its quality and “extra virgin” designation. The panel articulated our oils as buttery, nutty, green apple, herbaceous, woody, and grassy to describe our oils. In fact this year the COOC invited Chacewater Olive Oils to be displayed at their booth at the National Association for the Specialty Foods Trade (also known as the Fancy Food Show) in San Francisco.
All of us here at Chacewater would like to thank our Club members, distributors, family and friends! Without your help this last year wouldn’t have been as successful or as much fun. Through your continued support and hard work we have had some of the best Club parties and have enjoyed lots of community support and growth! A special thanks to Sinda Knight and her hard work on Sundays in the Tasting Room. From all of us here at Chacewater we wish you a Happy New Year!
Ten for ten plus: ten wines entered in the California State Fair Commerical Wine Competition and ten medals received, along with four Best of Class awards and one Best of California award. Not a bad record for any winery and a spectacular record for a young winery that had its first bottling just last year.
Chacewater Wine Co. & Olive Mill, located in Kelseyville, a town tucked away in Lake County, California, is that winery, and they received the 2012 Golden State Winery award for their hard work.
“Mark Burch is our winemaker and deserves the credit,” said Paul Manuel, General Manager and owner. “He graduated from Fresno State and worked for Gallo, Sebastani, Kendall Jackson and Wildhurst before coming to work for us. He is a wonderful winemaker, highly experienced and, I believe, underappreciated in Lake County.”
“I was quite surprised and elated to get the results of this year’s judging,” said Burch. “It was a phenomenal opportunity for me to get to work at a new facility with some great people. Paul is a great guy to work for and together all of us are proving to be a good team.
“David Weiss owns a nearby vineyard and has been here for around 14 years. He knows where the best grapes are grown and helped us get our foot in the door. We rely on him, since in addition to the grapes we get from Paul’s vineyard in Nevada County, we purchase all our white, and some red grapes from Lake County vineyards.
“I like to make clean, solid wines with true varietal character, that are not overdone or over oaked. To do this I have to stay up on the wine, from fermentation to bottling. When people ask me about my wines I don’t give them the usual talk, I tell them that if it feels and tastes right to them, they will enjoy it. Later they can work on identifying all the aromas and tastes that many winemakers talk about.
“We are permitted for 15,000 cases, but right now we are producing about 6,000,” Burch added.
The story of Chacewater began many years ago when Manuel’s father moved their family from Sacramento to 80 acres outside Nevada City.
“In 1988 the ‘49er Fire’ burned all the trees and brush on the land,” remarked Manuel, “and we were left with a mess. I had a construction company at the time and fortunately had the equipment to clear it.
“Several of our neighbors and friends had vineyards, so I studied what they did and, when my company wasn’t busy, I put my men to work preparing the land for a vineyard.
“My wife, Kellye, knows each of those vines intimately, since she was two weeks overdue when we planted the first 10 acres. She and the eldest of our three sons, Matt, who recently graduated from Purdue University with a degree in Agricultural Management, manage the vineyard, which is now 31 acres in size. Matt also helps me here at the winery.
“Our middle son, Luke, is a graduate student at the American University in Washington, D.C. He is our east coast sales representative for Maryland and the D. C. area. Our youngest son, Alex is a CPA for Ernst & Young in Phoenix, Arizona. They are all doing well and are very supportive.
“We simply sold our grapes for a while and after I retired from construction in 2004, we decided to take the grapes to Lake county for custom crush. Later we decided to go looking for a location for a winery and Lake County seemed to be the place to start.
“In 2001 St. Gregory of Sinai Monastery began building an olive mill there and planted about 10 acres of olive trees. The building and facility manager, and later the mill operator, was one of their Novices, Emilio De La Cruz.
“In 2008 they found it was interfering with their other work, so they decided to sell the land, orchard and mill. It was perfect for us, so we bought it and built a 10,000 square foot winery building next to the mill. Emilio stayed on to train our staff and a few years later he joined us full time so we can continue to produce the finest extra virgin olive oil in our mill.
“Our family is Cornish, with roots in the Cornwall area of Great Britain. We didn’t realize it at the time we moved to the Nevada City area, but my great grandfather, like many of the Cornish, had been a hard-rock miner there in the 1880s.
“On a visit to Cornwall we fell in love with Chacewater, a small village on the southern tip of England, that was the origin of the Manuel family tree. That seemed perfect for our winery name, and we included in our logo the unique Mark of a Chacewater church craftsman.
“Our vineyard, the olive mill and the winery facilities are all certified organic and audited once a year by the CCOF (California Certified Organic Farmers). Since we get grapes from other sources than our own vineyards, our wines are not necessarily organic. However, the facilities are, which means they are very clean and well maintained.
“Our wine is not the only thing receiving great awards, our Robust Tuscan Extra Virgin Olive Oil received Best of Class and Best of Show awards at the Los Angeles International Olive Oil Competition last March.”
The wines entered by Chacewater Wine Co. & Olive Mill in this year’s California State Fair Commercial Wine Competition were:
2010 Lake County Chardonnay (Double Gold, 98 points, Best of Class (Tie) North Coast Appellations and Best of California)
2009 Red Hills Petite Sirah (Gold, 95 points)
2008 Red Hills O-Eight Headache! (Gold, 94 points, Best of Class North Coast Appellations)
2010 Sierra Foothills Estate Merlot (Silver, 92 points)
2010 Sierra Foothills Estate Cabernet Sauvignon (Silver, 91 points)
2011 Lake County Sauvignon Blanc (Silver, 90 points)
2009 Red Hills Malbec (Silver, 90 points, Best of Class North Coast Appellations)
2011 Sierra Foothills Estate Rose (Silver, 89 points, Best of Class Sierra Foothills Appellations)
2011 Sierra Foothills Estate Zinfandel (Bronze, 86 points)
2010 Sierra Foothills Estate Syrah (Bronze, 86 points)
California Golden Winery Doug Noble
Chacewater Wine Co. & Olive Mill
5625 Gaddy Lane, Kelseyville, California
Not to be out-done by our award winning wines, we are pleased to announce the results of the 2012 Los Angeles International Olive Oil Competition, where our Tuscan Extra Virgin Olive Oil won Best of Show & Best of Class for the Robust Domestic oils!
In addition, our Mission Extra Virgin Olive Oil won a Gold Medal at the 2012 California Olive Oil Council Competition.
We are proud of the hard work and attention to detail from Chacewater Olive Mill Master, Emilio Dela Cruz. Congratulations on these results and we look forward to continuing to produce world-class award winning Extra Virgin Olive Oil and wines!
We are honored to announce our winery was named 2012 Golden State Winery of the Year at the recently completed California State Fair Wine Competition. Chacewater wines scored well across all categories including:
- 2010 Chacewater Chardonnay – 98 Points, Double Gold
- 2009 Chacewater Petite Syrah – 95 Points, Gold
- 2008 Chacewater Red Blend – 94 Points, Gold
- 2010 Chacewater Merlot – 92 Points, Silver
- 2010 Chacewater Cabernet Sauvignon – 91 Points, Silver
- 2011 Chacewater Sauvignon Blanc – 90 Points, Silver
- 2009 Chacewater Malbec – 90 Points, Silver
- 2011 Chacewater Rose – 89 Points, Silver
- 2010 Chacewater Zinfandel – 86 Points, Bronze
- 2010 Chacewater Syrah – 86 Points, Bronze
This year, 2,890 wine entries were received from 688 participating wineries. Seventy-two judges on 18 panels awarded 2,156 medals, including 74 Double Gold, 268 Gold, 1,195 Silver and 734 Bronze.
Awards will be presented during California’s Grape & Gourmet, the state’s premier wine and food event, which returns to Cal Expo on Aug. 18. The results of the wine competition will appear in “California Wine” magazine, a publication of the California State Fair. “California Wine” will be available at Grape & Gourmet and Save Mart Supermarkets. For Grape & Gourmet tickets and information, go to www.bigfun.org
Our wines fared well at the 2012 Los Angeles International Wine Competition with the 2010 Chacewater Zinfandel scoring a 92 Point Gold Medal and Best of Class Award, as well as the 2009 Chacewater Malbec scoring a 91 Point Gold Medal and Best of Class Award!
There were many strong contenders in the 73rd annual Los Angeles International Wine & Spirits Competition. Judged in May 2012, many varietals and price ranges were represented, with a new point system introduced, acknowledging each varietal’s special attributes and providing a new level of precision in the competition’s wine ranking systems, a benefit for the competition and wine enthusiasts.
Nearly 3,300 wines were entered, tasted by a 72-member panel comprised of international judges.
The public will have its first opportunity to taste the award-winning wines at FUN Decanted, a June fundraising event to benefit the education programs of The Learning Centers at Fairplex.
We’re pleased to announce some big recognition for our wines at the 2012 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition:
- Double Gold – 2008 Red Blend “08 Headache”
- Gold – 2009 Chacewater Malbec
- Silver – 2009 Chacewater Syrah, 2010 Chacewater Sauvignon Blanc, 2009 Chacewater Petite Sirah
- Bronze – 2010 Chacewater Chardonnay, 2010 Chacewater Riesling
We’ll be featuring each of our award winners at the official San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition Grand Tasting, Saturday February 18 at Ft Mason in San Francisco. Buy tickets for the 2-5pm Public Tasting here.
Chacewater Boutique Wines, Extra Virgin Olive Oils, and Handmade Soaps make ideal holiday gifts. To help make your gift giving easier we are pleased to offer $10 flat rate shipping for all orders through Jan 1, 2012.
If you haven’t taken the time to check out our latest scores and reviews you may not know that our first release wines garnered a number of awards for quality this past year.Think about Chacewater Riesling as a delicious pairing with your holiday appetizers, or our Gold Medal winning Syrah for the main course. All of our wines are available for direct purchase through our online store.
Wine & Olive Oil Club Memberships also make excellent gifts. Club memberships are gifts that keep on giving throughout the year. Your family & friends will recieve regular shipments of our quality products and enjoy the multiple benefits of club membership. Learn more about our club offerings here.
Whatever you chose for gifts from Chacewater Winery & Olive Mill you can be confident in the best quality and now a very low cost of shipping. Happy Holidays to All!
WARNING! On Saturday, August 20, San Francisco will be invaded by dozens of Lake County Wineries – bringing with them nearly 100 big, intense, high elevation wines from the mountains north of Napa Valley.
This is a rare opportunity to not only see and meet these boutique wineries, but to taste their wines right in San Francisco. Plus, with a VIP Ticket, you will be able to preview and taste the People’s Choice Award Winning Wines from Lake County. Experience Wines with Altitude!
Wines with Altitude!
Lake County Wineries invade San Francisco
Saturday, August 20
12:00pm-01:00pm – Trade Only
01:00pm-05:00pm – Open to the Public
The Winery SF
200 California Ave, San Francisco, CA 94130
General Admission Tickets: $35 Early Bird (thru 8/3) / $50 at the door
VIP Tickets: $50 Early Bird (thru 8/3) / $70 at the door
VIP Tickets include access to a special tasting of Lake County’s People’s Choice Award Nomination Wines
Purchase Tickets at: http://wineswithaltitude.eventbrite.com
Visit Our Tasting Room
Open Daily 11am-5pm
5625 Gaddy Ln.
Kelseyville, CA 95451
Phone: (707) 279-2995