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Benovia Winery’s Rare 18-Liter Melchior Takes Center Stage at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen

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The massive bottle, which towers over traditional 750 ml bottles and holds two cases of Benovia’s critically-acclaimed 2019 Martaella Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir, will be featured in charismatic wine expert Mark Oldman’s popular seminar on the “World’s Best Special Occasion Wine”

Two more Benovia wines will be presented by sommelier Amanda McCrossin

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (June 9, 2022) – Coveted. Colossal. Critically-acclaimed. Benovia Winery’s Co-Founder and Vice Chairman, Mary Dewane, and the winery’s Winemaker and Co-Owner, Mike Sullivan, are excited to announce that a rare 18-liter bottle of Benovia’s collectible 2019 Martaella Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir will be featured in wine expert Mark Oldman’s upcoming seminar at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen entitled, “World’s Best Special Occasion Wine.” The 18-liter bottle, known as a “Melchior,” (pronounced mel-CURE), dwarfs traditional 750 ml wine bottles and holds a whopping two cases of wine – 24 bottles in one.

“We are so grateful to Mark Oldman for including us in his seminar on the World’s Best Special Occasion Wines,” said Mary Dewane, Co-Founder and Vice Chairman of Benovia Winery. “What an honor to be singled out among so many stellar wines from the world’s best regions, and it is indeed a wine we serve at home when celebrating special occasions with our friends and family. Plus, I love Mark’s approach. There’s nothing stiff or stuffy about his presentations. He introduces you to the world’s best wines while making it fun, engaging and entertaining. He really knows how to connect with people, while respecting the integrity of our wine. We can’t wait!”

Benovia Winery is a special, small production family-owned winery in the heart of Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley. Their Martaella estate vineyard is Benovia’s heart and soul, as it surrounds both the winery and tasting room. Sullivan, a rare “local” Sonoma County winemaker who grew up planting his family’s nearby vineyard with his brothers, is known for his team’s meticulous approach to sustainable farming. Benovia is distinctive for its high density vineyards which means a lot to wine enthusiasts. Because the vines are planted more closely together, they are encouraged to live in a much smaller footprint, so they consume less fertilizer and water. Specialized irrigation also enables Sullivan and his team to focus their precious resources on only the vines with the most critical needs, which also conserves a considerable amount of water. He and his team even take the time to customize special farming equipment which will fit down the narrow rows, thoughtfully select a diverse array of clones, and take aerial surveys of each block’s vigor – all of which contributes to a lower yielding vineyard with the grapes’ ripeness, sugar, and acidity falling into perfect balance. Savvy fans in-the-know, affectionately known as “Benovians,” seek out the Martaella Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir, a perennial favorite among discerning wine critics, too.

“It’s really gratifying to have our 2019 Martaella Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir recognized by Mark Oldman as one of the world’s best special occasion wines,” added Mike Sullivan, Benovia’s Winemaker and Co-Owner. “We pride ourselves on ‘precision farming’ and you can taste the difference in the glass. We’re not interested in chasing trends. Instead, we take a thoughtful approach to crafting wines with longevity.”

Fewer than 500 cases of Benovia’s 2019 Martaella Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir were made. The vineyards received generous rainfall in 2019 which fortunately recharged groundwater and refilled irrigation ponds. Sullivan says that the picture perfect growing season and critical months leading up to harvest gave the grapes long hang time and afforded the Benovia team a slow, calculated pick. He notes that the wine has an intriguing blend of both power and restraint, with vibrant aromas leaping from the glass. On the palate the wine’s juicy mouthfeel is supported by pomegranate and dark cherry, building through the mid-palate to fine grain tannins on the finish.

“I’ve long admired Benovia’s wines and their commitment to quality and luxury,” said Mark Oldman, founder of Bevinars and award-winning author, who is presenting at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen for the 16th time. “Mike Sullivan’s outstanding winemaking speaks for itself. He has classic style with a modern sensibility, yet at the same time the Benovia team doesn’t take themselves too seriously – which is perfect in a dynamic setting like the Food & Wine Classic. I have some surprises planned for my seminar on the World’s Best Special Occasion Wines, and having Benovia’s Melchior of 2019 Martaella Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir to share with our guests really makes this presentation stand out.”

More Benovia Wines at The Food & Wine Classic in Aspen

Mary Dewane is thrilled to share that two more wines will be featured in sommelier Amanda McCrossin’s seminars at The Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, tooThe former Wine Director for Napa Valley’s popular PRESS Restaurant, Amanda is showcasing Benovia’s 2019 Three Sisters Chardonnay in her presentation called “California Dreaming: A Roadtrip Through California’s Top Wine Regions,” and Benovia’s 2018 Blanc de Noir in her seminar entitled, “Bubbles, Bubbles, Bubbles: Sparkling Wine Beyond Champagne.”

The Food & Wine Classic in Aspen takes place June 17 – 19, 2022 and Mark Oldman’s presentations on the “World’s Best Special Occasion Wine” are on June 17th and 19th. Both seminars take place at 10 a.m. at The Little Nell. Amanda McCrossin’s seminar on California’s Top Wine Regions is June 17th and 18th at 3 p.m. at the St. Regis, and her seminar on sparkling wine regions beyond Champagne is scheduled for 10 a.m. on June 19th at “River Tent 1.” Benovia’s Co-Founder and Vice Chairman, Mary Dewane, will be pouring select Benovia wines, including the Martaella Estate Pinot Noir and Three Sisters Chardonnay, during the event’s Grand Tasting.

About Benovia Winery

Benovia Winery is a special, small production, family-owned winery in the heart of the Russian River Valley that specializes in sustainably farmed, single-vineyard Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.  Founded by husband and wife team Mary Dewane and Joe Anderson in 2005 (they purchased their first vineyard in 2002), Benovia was named after Mary and Joe’s fathers, Ben Dewane and Novian Anderson. Benovia owns and farms three distinctly different vineyards – two of them sustainably, and one is certified organic – so as to present several nuanced wines in its portfolio. Their Martaella estate vineyard is named after their mothers, Martha and Eleanor. The wines are allocated directly to customers and distributed to select shops and restaurants across the country. Benovia Winery is located at 3339 Hartman Lane in Santa Rosa, CA – and can be found on social media @benoviawinery.

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