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Virginia Dare Winery Debuts Inaugural Vintages


Francis Ford Coppola’s New Sonoma County Winery Releases Virginia Dare Showcase Wines with 2014 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir & 2014 Russian River Valley Chardonnay

Virginia DareGEYSERVILLE, Calif. (November 12, 2015)Virginia Dare Winery is proud to announce the release of the Virginia Dare Showcase Wines. The inaugural vintages from the newly named Virginia Dare Winery include the 2014 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir and 2014 Russian River Valley Chardonnay. Located in Sonoma County’s Geyserville, Virginia Dare Winery celebrates the myths, people, places and history that shaped American winemaking.

“We are very excited to unveil the first two Virginia Dare wines,” says Sandy Walheim, winemaker for Virginia Dare Winery. “Not only are these wines a reflection of the near-perfect 2014 growing season, and an authentic representation of Russian River Valley’s terroir, but they also symbolize the beginning of our efforts to revitalize one of America’s first wine brands — the label evokes the vintage charm of an American classic from a bygone era.”

The 2014 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir (SRP: $25) boasts a round, oaky structure and elegant tannins that linger on the palate. Exotic notes of sandalwood lay the foundation for soft tones of red and black cherry, red plum, and blueberry, expressing a hint of floral violet that culminates in a concentrated, roasted finish. Aged the classic way for 12 months in French oak, the debut vintage of the 2014 Russian River Valley Chardonnay (SRP: $25) delivers both intensity and density, expressing superlative American craftsmanship. A luxurious, creamy texture supports tropical aromas of orange blossom, red grapefruit, Asian pear, and pineapple. Rounding out the profile are underlying flavors of toasty bread balanced with French oak.

The story of the Virginia Dare Winery began with North Carolina’s first commercial winery, Medoc Vineyard, which opened in 1835. Two businessmen, known as the Garrett brothers, purchased the property in 1865 calling it Garrett & Company. They began producing the Virginia Dare label which quickly became one of the nation’s top selling wines. With the start of Prohibition in 1919, Garrett & Company was forced to move, first to Brooklyn, New York, and then to Cucamonga, California, where the business transformed into the Virginia Dare Winery. It was one of the first wineries to sell wine after the repeal of Prohibition in 1933 and was considered a booming business for much of the late 40s and 50s, but eventually saw turmoil and nearly faded into history.

Today, the revitalized Virginia Dare Winery celebrates the genesis of American winemaking. “As a child I remember the Virginia Dare wine because of the pretty blonde girl on the label and the ‘Say it again, Virginia Dare’ jingle they used to advertise on the radio,” said Francis Coppola. His goal, as told in a recent NBC-TV TODAY show interview in September, is to revive the wine brand so that it isn’t lost to future generations.

Over the past year, four wines referred to as The Legends were released chronicling the mysterious fate of Virginia Dare – The White Doe, Manteo, Two Arrowheads and The Lost Colony – each revealing a different aspect of the Virginia Dare legend which ultimately culminated in the new winery’s name and first two vintages. For more information, please visit www.VirginiaDareWinery.com.


Virginia Dare Winery, American wines since 1835, pays tribute to America’s winegrowing heritage. The existence of the 400-year-old scuppernong “Mother Vine” growing on Roanoke Island, North Carolina is intertwined with the story of one of the first English settlements in the New World, which later mysteriously disappeared without a trace, leaving nothing but a spellbinding story of mythical and mysterious characters – each of which grace the labels of our wines. Crafted with grapes from the finest viticulture regions in California, our wines are rich with characteristics befitting an American legend: Pure. Natural. Distinctive. Learn more by visiting Virginia Dare Winery located at 22281 Chianti Road, Geyserville, CA 95441.

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