This offering has some amazingly unique wines, some never to be seen nor made available ever again, starting with rare California wines from the 1930's and 1940's, while others are relatively more common starting with the 1960's. There are a limited number of European wines, the earliest from the 1938 vintage. Wines in this cellar offer the advantage of having been in proper storage for decades.
I am Richard Albert, an independent wine consultant, referred by a winemaker friend to work with the curator's widow helping her sell the collection. There are many more wines in this unusual cellar not listed which may have birth year significance and commemorative interest.
Walter Winton was hired into the UC Davis Oenology Department in 1957 by one of the pioneers of modern California winemaking, Dr Maynard Amerine. "Wally" was a Staff Research Associate in the Department of Viticulture and Enology for 40 years. He had the enviable position being the department's food and wine consultant as well as for several UCD Chancellors. He was on several committees at UCD where food and wine was involved whereby he was able to meet a lot of individuals in the wine industry. He personally selected the food and wine when Julia Childs came to visit the chancellor. It appears several of the bottles selected and prepared for tastings over the years which did not get opened, ended up in his private cellar, as evidenced by cut capsules or missing capsules and untouched corks. Mr. Winton enjoyed being a winemaker and teaching/training students from California and Europe as well as Chile and Argentina. He did independent consulting work for wineries on his own time which is how he gained respect and prestige outside of UCD.
Please be aware that some of the non vintage wines listed with astericks have approximate vintage dating provided by the department's staff writing on the labels or with typed strip or gummed labels glued on the bottles with the dates they were received. There are also bottles dated by him as per notations on his old inventory sheets.
- Ibelieve some of the bottles in the cellar were gifts from students after they were established at various wineries.
- There are wines made by both UCD staff and students from various Napa vineyards and quite a few from the UC Davis Oakville Station Experimental Vineyard. Other unique wines were bottled by wineries such as Mondavi, Silverado, Buena Vista and Martini for UC Davis: a couple labeled for research purposes, some as commemorative anniversary bottles and others for fundraising efforts for the university.
- The cellar has been cooled by consecutive Breezaire units for decades to 56-58 degrees, so many bottles have neck fills, Some of the much older wines from 1930’s and up have considerable ullage, only a couple are not normal for their ages. There are bin soiled and some water stained labels as he appeared to have condensate issues before he designed some unique plumbing to drain it away. Some corks did fail over time and there are signs of seepage on a couple of labels, most from other bottles. All the labels are legible.
Enough background, please enjoy the following partial cellar listing as there are unique bottles which can appeal to the wine geek in many of us.
Ordering: If you wish to order priced wines, please email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org
Your request will be acknowledged based on being the first to order and then confirmed subsequently. Please note I am a one man operation, the wines are still located in the cellar near Sacramento while I am not and that I work deliberately and cautiously around older irreplaceable bottles. You will be contacted after the widow(who wishes to be actively involved) and I remove the ordered bottles from the cellar. For some of you, winter is going to delay shipping, so no rushing will help your orders. Please bear with us.
Some of the very early bottles(please see the photos in the last section of the offer) have developed enough ullage that they are most probably no longer drinkable. There are no price references for such bottles, but they have value as curiosities/collector candy and are significant historically, their prices are to be determined by you. Please submit the price you are willing to pay, highest offer will get the bottle. Descriptions of these bottles are included in the main listing with no pricing.
PDF of complete Cellar with some Pictures at the end of the list (click to download) Here are a few images, more are on the last 10 pages of the PDF.