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Dehlinger Winery winemaker Darryl Miller is back on California Wine Country with Steve Jaxon and Dan Berger today. The Dehlinger Winery vineyard is located in the area of Goldridge soil in the western part of the Russian River Valley AVA, not far from Sebastopol. The last time Darryl was on California Wine Country was this episode of August 26, 2020 and Eva Dehlinger was also on this show in October 2018, on this episode.
The Dehlinger family originally purchased the property in 1972, began planting grapes in ’75 and the first release was ‘78. The vineyard in the heart of the Russian River is in the area of Goldridge soil. The area was planted mostly to cherries and apples.
Dan Berger’s cellar wine of the week is an 11-year-old dry Riesling that Dan says has interesting lemon flavors… The secret to this wine is that it is really dry. The winemaker is Louisa Rose, a friend of Dan’s.
Two Pinot Noirs and a Chardonnay
They taste the 2017 Dehlinger Altamont Pinot Noir, which is the current release, which is remarkable because other current releases are around 2020 now. This is a very limited release, to the wine club and at the. According to Dan it is a classic example of what Russian River can do. Some of the vines are 40 years old. The vineyard has a combination of Swan, Martini and 988 clones. It has Russian River character of Raspberry, strawberry and black cherry. They make another Russian River Pinot Noir called Goldridge, based on that soil, which is more forward and heavier. The Alatamont is brighter and a lighter color than usual.
The next wine is the 2019 Dehlinger Chardonnay. With every bottling, they taste back 10 vintages. The 2012 was “just beautiful.” This Chardonnay displays a good balance between richness and freshness. They only have about eight acres of Chardonnay, which has been replanted in small blocks. This is all Wente clone, with small berries and therefore crisp acidity. It takes a lot of patience and attention to make a wine this bright and clear without filtering it.
Rodney Strong & Davis Bynum
Darryl Miller tells about how he started working in wine, starting as a salesperson with many prestigious brands. Eventually he founded a brokerage, which he worked for and sold off. Dehlinger Vineyard is located at Vine Hill Rd. and Guerneville Rd. They are open Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday by appointment. It’s a working winer
Finally, the last tasting is a Cabernet Sauvignon. Hardly anyone else in this cool area grows this grape. It has a beautiful aroma of black olive, a characteristic of Cab from a cool region. Most people will never smell or taste this kind of wine. It will hold up for 20 years.