LONG ROAD LEADS BACK HOME TO HOWELL MOUNTAIN WITH MIKE DUNN
Mike Dunn returned to his family’s winery in 2000 and in this Podcast tells the story of his journey outside of winemaking and how it ultimately lead back to Dunn Vineyards up on Howell Mountain in Napa. Mike describes what Dunn looked like back when he was a teenager working for Randy. He then goes over how some basic equipment upgrades in the early 2000′s have streamlined the winemaking, saving time and everyone’s back health, yet kept the winemaking simple and respected the tradition of Dunn Vineyards – massive in fruit and tannins.
Having access to some gnarly old vine Petite Sirah, and the motivation to create something purely his own, Mike launched Retro Cellars in 2003. During our conversation Mike gives a cheat-sheet for working with Petite Sirah both in the vineyard and the cellar. He then ties Dunn and Retro in together and explains how time and patience are key to both of these very different wines.
Mike and his sister, Kristina Dunn, are in charge of Dunn Vineyards’ day-to-day operations. It may be difficult to find when you are driving on Howell Mountain, and there is no entrance sign to the property, but it is worth the effort when you have a chance to visit. Call ahead to make an appointment and don’t be scared off by the barns, dogs, horses, or Mike’s purple hands once you arrive. This is one of Napa’s most exciting, yet lowest-key gems.
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