Combine a passion for charitable causes with an equal passion for producing fine wine, add a dash of whimsy and yes, a bathtub, and you get Dawn’s Dream. This is one tasting room that is well worth seeking out!
Our tasting tour of Carmel was going well, with a start at Silvestri Vineyards. Immediately adjacent to Silvestri’s we found Dawn’s Dream Winery. We scampered through the falling rain into the tasting room and looked for a gap at the bar. The room was alive with laughter and a less-than-serious attitude. We fit right in! We found a spot at the tasting bar and wine guide Deborah set us up with glasses.
We started with the 2016 “Nugget” Chardonnay. The tasting notes had a perfect description: “lemon creme” and we added “gelato inspired” to those notes. A fantastic off-dry Chard without too much butter on the back of the tongue. Count us as fans! Another hit was their 2016 Pinot Noir Rosé. This is their flagship wine, made using whole cluster techniques. We found it delicious, dancing across our tongues. Winemaker Greg Vita certainly knows his way around a Pinot!
We next moved to the true Pinots, each named after one of Dawn’s daughters. The 2016 “Rachel” Pinot Noir was made from free run juice. We found it complex, with the barest hint of asphalt on the finish. The 2016 “Alyssa” Pinot Noir had subtle vegetable aromas and vibrant fruit and tannins on the palate. Young and promising, this was a hit with both of us. The 2016 “Nicole” Pinot Noir (their reserve) was much softer, but still zippy at the finish, with restrained fruit and anise flavors.
We made some tough decisions to thin out our take home list, thanked Deborah for her amazing help, and headed off into the rain toward our tasting room. The day was still young and we were still full of enthusiasm!
About the Author: John grills a mean steak and is always in the market for another wine fridge. Believes that if a winery has more than 10 employees, it's probably too big. Buys wine faster than he drinks it, but who cares?