Balance and Elegance from Roots in Mount Veeder AVA
For Paul and Betty Woolls, who met at a wine tasting event, Progeny Winery represents a love story of lives and vines intertwined with shared roots. Happily bound together in marriage and winemaking, the 32-acre vineyard includes four Bordeaux, two of the “lost” Bordeaux and eight Rhône varieties.
What is now called Woolls Ranch, this property was introduced to them by a friend. The couple put in an offer the day before their wedding – an exciting way to begin a legacy for their new family union. At the crest of the Progeny Winery vineyard, the canopy of a very old oak tree crowns the Mount Veeder property and it inspired the name and label. It’s easy to see why Betty and Paul fell in love with the beauty of this property.
Paul and Betty have been big fans of the wines from the Mount Veeder AVA. But as Hospitality Director Blanca Preciado explains to visitors, “Mount Veeder is a very difficult AVA to plant and grow grapes. The low nutrient soils on the southwest- ern slopes render dry, shallow, and rocky topsoil, creating a stressed environment for the grapes. The terroir produces wines with distinct flavor profiles, structure, complex- ity and concentration that are hallmarks of this superb appellation.”
Each year, Progeny releases four limited production wines: Trinity Blanc – a white Rhône blend, Trinity Rouge – a red Rhône blend, Mount Veeder Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and their flagship bottling, Special Selection Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon which is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. The winemaking philosophy at Progeny focuses on extended barrel and bottle aging, resulting in wines of power, balance, finesse and elegance with exotic bouquets of fruit and spice and a long, lingering finish.
Winemaker Sean Capiaux describes his winemaking style as neo-classical. He employs modern equipment to produce naturally fermented wines that are bottled unfined and unfiltered, allowing the varietal character and terroir of the Progeny Estate to shine through.
The flagship Cabernet Sauvignon, Progeny Special Selection Reserve, spends 32 months in mostly new French oak barrels and 36 months aging in the bottle before release. The Progeny team believes extended barrel and bottle aging adds depth and dimension to the wine. And with almost six years from harvest to release, Progeny does part of the maturing for you. This is the key to the philosophy Paul believes is necessary for the wines from Mount Veeder AVA to show their true potential.
“The wines have a wonderful balance of acidity, smooth tannins and concentrated fruit. We expect them to age gracefully for 15- to 20-plus years,” said Paul.
Designed to showcase the dramatic hillside vineyards and vistas from Mount Veeder, the sleek, award-winning Progeny Hospitality Center is open to visitors by appointment only. In addition to Estate reserve and library tastings of limited- production wines, options include a wine and cheese pairing experience and an intimate wine and food option with Estate chef John Gerber.
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Article By: Laurie Jo Miller Farr // Photos By: Adrian Gregorutti