My partner Kara and I are so excited to be included in Berserker Day. A lot of folks here on WB already know us and are tremendous supporters of the wines, something we sincerely appreciate.
For those of you who don’t know us, a bit of background about who we are and what we’re doing. By day, I’m the Assistant Winemaker for Turley Wine Cellars in St. Helena. Kara is the Director of Viticulture for Foley Family Wines. We started Fine Disregard Wine Co. in 2015. I actually tell a small lie. The true roots go back to 2014 when we literally made two barrels of Syrah for friends and family in a reefer container at Kara’s work in Carneros. Sic parvis magna, I suppose.
Having told that creation story, Fine Disregard is our personal project. We don’t have wealthy investors or famous consulting winemakers. The two of us do everything from hauling fruit to answering emails. Our goal quite simply is making wines that truly speak of California. We look for compelling vineyards and practice a philosophy of minimal intervention winemaking in the cellar.
In practical terms, that means looking for varieties planted in interesting soils first and foremost, preferably farmed organically, and as often as possible from old vines (i.e. >60 years, similar to the Historic Vineyard Society). From there, we focus on picking physiologically ripe fruit early enough so that we don’t have to worry about acidulating or watering back. Everything is fermented spontaneously (both primary and malolactic). Whites are barrel fermented without batonage; reds are 100% whole cluster with gentle pumpovers during a 10-14 day maceration.
The only additives we use are yeast nutrients and sulfur. We don’t use enzymes, color additives, yeast hulls, clarifying or fining agents, stabilizers, oak chips, etc. Nor do we saignee or chapitilize. Elevage for each wine is fourteen months, generally sur lie in used and neutral French oak (228L Burgundy barriques for whites, neutral puncheons for reds). We bottle <25ppm FSO2, and occasionally lightly filter for turbidity or if we feel the wine is a bit muddled and the aromatics need to be tightened up.
Currently, our portfolio includes:
- Grenache from a rocky hillside vineyard in Sonoma
- Semillon from the cooler reaches of Southern Napa Valley
- old vine Carignane from the Cemetery Vineyard in Mendocino
- old vine Mataro from the Pato Vineyard in Contra Costa
We’ve also been fortunate to source old vine Grenache from the Sceales Vineyard in Sonoma, as well as Syrah from old vine Barossa Shiraz cuttings in Stag’s Leap that Kara used to farm.
No matter where we source fruit, however, our aim is making bright, elegant wines that show off where they’re from and age gracefully for years to come. Hopefully, we’ve done that.
Thanks everyone!! Kara and I can’t wait to share our wines with you.
As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions or if you just want to say hello.