From 1973 to 1983, Walter Schug made some of the most memorable Cabernet Sauvignons and Bordeaux-style blends in California history while Winemaker for Joseph Phelps Vineyards in the Napa Valley. His own Bordeaux blend exhibits the same finesse, intensity and ageability that have made his earlier wines rare and valuable collector’s items. This complex wine has dense color and structure and features bright aromas of violets and blueberries, with ripe fruit flavors reminiscent of cherries, chocolate and cassis. Nicely integrated tannins and oak give it a rich texture and a long and elegant finish. It drinks well on release paired with rich meats and cheeses, however this wine will continue to improve with additional cellaring for up to 10 years.
Founded in 1980, Schug Carneros Estate Winery is the showcase and life-long dream of one of California’s most celebrated winemakers. Walter Schug’s reputation blossomed during his tenure as Founding Winemaker for Joseph Phelps Vineyards in the 1970s, where he made California’s first proprietary Bordeaux-Style blend (Insignia) and legendary vineyard designated Cabernets (Backus and Eisele Vineyards).
Drawing on his long experience in the production of fine wines in both Europe and California, Walter set up his own winery with his wife Gertrud in the cool, marine climate of the Carneros Appellation. Here he could focus on the Pinot Noir and Chardonnay varietals that had always been close to his heart.
In 1995 Sonoma-born winemaker Michael Cox came on board at Schug. Trained in Enology at UC Davis, Mike worked in several Californian wineries before he was lured from Napa Valley to Carneros - Sonoma, to work with Walter Schug as his assistant winemaker. One year later he was promoted to Winemaker and placed in charge of the day-to-day winemaking duties, where he remains today.
Schug Carneros Estate Winery combines old world understanding and tradition with modern winemaking techniques. By using only the finest grapes available, and maintaining the best winemaking values, these wines have gained acceptance worldwide as true contemporary classics.