Growing our Zinfandel for our Seven Mile Zin.
Located in the town of Camino in El Dorado County, Biama Vineyard is home to our bold and luscious Seven Mile Zinfandel. Formerly a logging community, Camino was originally known as “Seven Mile House” serving as a stagecoach stop for homesteaders traveling along the Old Carson Wagon Road in the late 1850’s. The "mile houses” were named so as they represented the distance traveled from one town to the next. Camino earned this name as it is seven miles east of the historic town of Placerville, a central hub during the California gold rush.
Planted in 2005, this westward facing vineyard sits at 3100’ elevation and is made up of decomposed granite with an extreme amount of iron oxide which creates an illusion that the vineyard is glowing red. The budwood comes from the old Beatty Clone in Howell Mountain dating back to the early 1900’s and although the vineyard produces extremely small berry clusters, they equal massive color that literally grips the glass with blackish purple.
Growing our Petite Sirah.
Our Mountain Grown Petite Sirah comes from this high-elevation vineyard in Placerville known as Catamount. The name pays homage to the mountain cats indigenous to the surrounding area as well as the ones known to visit the vineyard on occasion. Located at 3100’ elevation, the vineyard sits above the fog on most days giving access to sunshine and producing grapes with dark pigments, strong tannins, and concentrated flavor. The vines were planted in 2003 on soils of slate and schist. The presence of quartz is also prominent with a large bolder located in the middle of the vineyard as well as smaller rocks scattered throughout the landscape. The significance of the quartz is its ability to change the temperature of a soil by retaining heat or reflecting sun. These three soils combined produce big, powerful wines with rich minerality.
Winter at Cinnamon Hill. Situated at 2,300’ elevation in the Sierra Nevada foothills halfway between Auburn and Placerville, our Cinnamon Hill Vineyard is home to our Dolcetto and Nebbiolo, both planted in 1997. The name Cinnamon Hill comes from the cinnamon-colored soil made from decomposed slate laid down by massive mud flows millions of years ago with the occasional streak of quartz that became famous in the 1850’s for its gold bearing veins. These slate soils are meager in nutrients and severely restrict yields in our vineyards. Low yields, outstanding selections of Italian budwood, and careful farming allow Due Vigne to produce one of the best examples of Dolcetto anywhere.
Our Nebbiolo is grown slightly south and on an even rockier section of the hillside and planted East to West, and up and down rather than across in the tradition of Barolo and Barbaresco. Nebbiolo, which is noted for the earliest bud break and can suffer devastating losses from early frosts. We have avoided this issue by the use of the vertical planting which lets the cold air run down the hill and not trapping the damaging temperatures around the vines. Both our Dolcetto and Nebbiolo thrive in this unique landscape and produce award-winning wines year after year!
Growing our Alessio Zinfandel and Private Reserve Old Vine Zinfandel.
Planted in 1902, our Ancient Vine Zinfandel comes from the esteemed Ferrero Vineyard in Amador County. Alessio, meaning “defender” pays tribute to John Alessio Ferrero who spent his entire life protecting his land and tending to his vineyards, walnut trees and at one time raising sheep. He was known throughout the Valley as one of the last “Dry Farmers”, believing dry farming produced a high-quality grape. This vineyard can be seen on Shenandoah Valley Road with its characteristic white tractor disc with the owner’s name proudly displayed, “Ferrero”. The sign has been there for decades and we are honored to be able to work with this very special fruit.
Growing our Syrah & Mourvedre in the Hidden Reserve.
David Girard's weathered granite vineyards lie on the slopes of Gold Hill, which rises directly out of a canyon from the American River near Coloma, California. The Syrah and Mourvédre were first planted in 1998, on soils from the "Auberry" series, which means that the parent material is decomposed igneous rock on rolling hills. Coarse and sandy, the soil provides an excellent, well-draining medium for the vines. At approximately 1400' elevation in the Sierra Foothills, the vineyard experiences some significant summer warmth, but pronounced diurnal winds blow cooling mountain breezes down the canyon at night. These temperature swings help the vines to fully ripen grapes with balanced, intense flavors and great acidity.
Growing our Barbara 115 Private Reserve.
Our Reserve Barbera Vineyard known as La Collina or, “the hill” performs beautifully with the clone 115 Barbera originally brought from Asti, Italy. At 2400’ in elevation, the vineyard is planted in the traditional Italian method of up and down slope rather than across. This south facing slope also differs in soil as it is granitic in nature rather than typical red decomposed slate. The combination of soil and climate create a masterpiece highlighting wild cherries and bright red fruits along with its classic bracing acidity, followed by very soft tannins.
Growing our Sangiovese and Vermentino.
Our Sangiovese and Vermentino thrive in the unique climate of Amador County’s Shenandoah Valley. The Shenandoah Valley is the westernmost and therefore, the least elevated and warmest region within the Sierra Foothills. Lyman Vineyard is situated in the cooler portion of the valley which means the grapes ripen more evenly and don’t lose as much acidity. The soils are made of decomposed granite which provide excellent drainage which allows for large root systems and healthy vines.
Growing our Napa Vally Merlot Private Reserve.
The Pettigrew Vineyard Merlot Reserve represents one of two Merlots Due Vigne has made from Napa fruit. The other came to us from Stags Leap. As fate would have it, the Pettigrew Vineyard has finally succumbing to old age and diseases and was removed in 2017. The gravelly loams and rocky volcanic soils found in this vineyard drained easily and the ash sub-soils hold water, which helped these vines thrive. Here, as on the right bank of Bordeaux, the cooler microclimate limited dehydration, preserved acidity levels, and helped in the long, slow ripening season. Our final bottling of this special wine was 2016.
Growing our Barbera & Primitivo.
The Shaker Ridge Primitivo and Barbera from Andy and Elizabeth Standeven illustrates what dedicated growers can achieve in the vineyard. The Vineyard is located on a gently rolling ridge top just off Sand Ridge road near Highway 49 in El Dorado. It is surrounded by valleys created by the North Fork of the Cosumnes River a couple miles to its north and west, and by the Middle Fork of the Cosumnes River to its southeast.
The elevation is approximately 1500' above sea level with hot days and cool nights typical of the Sierra Foothills region (and the occasional winter snow storm).
The entire Primitivo vineyard is planted with the 03 clone of Primitivo on drought- and phylloxera-resistant St. George rootstock and planted on a gently south-southwest-facing slope. The soils are mostly the same rocky red clay loam soils of the Barbera vineyard, although the western portion of the vineyard transitions to brownish, slate-containing soils.
The Barbera grapes are planted on an eastern-facing slope, to take advantage of the morning sun during the early spring when Barbera’s characteristically early emerging vines would be susceptible to frost damage. Approximately 40% is clone 02 planted on the classic drought- and phylloxera-resistant rootstock St. George. Another 20% each of the same 02 clone is planted on two other drought-resistant rootstocks, 110R and 1103P, and the remaining 20% of the Barbera is the Montevina clone planted on 1103P rootstock. The soils here are deep, red clay loam granitic soils, becoming shallower at the northern end due to large slabs of quartz near the surface.
Winter at Snows Crossing. Snows Crossing Vineyard is one of our newest additions to the Due Vigne portfolio. Located at 3100’ elevation on Snows Road between Camino and Pleasant Valley, this pure south facing 9% grade is made up of decomposed granite with high levels of iron oxide which are ideal for growing world-class Rhone varietals; Cinsaut (SAN-soh) and Syrah.
Growing our Aglianico Private Reserve.
This stunning vineyard is located at the Gateway to Apple Hill in Placerville. Planted on a hillside at an elevation of 2,400 feet are 30 acres of Italian and Rhone varieties including our long awaited Aglianico Reserve. These rolling hills provide an ideal balance of warm days and cool nights that allows Mediterranean varieties to develop the delicate aromas and robust flavors we're seeking in our wines. Starfield Vineyards was inspired by the “Star Fields” – unique sites where fruit develops the optimal balance of aroma, flavor and texture.