The winery was the dream of Jess Jackson, the man who founded the incredibly successful Jackson Family Wines. He, however, wanted to produce truly fine wine in Sonoma County.

Verite winery

About the producer

A chance encounter with Bordeaux vigneron Pierre Seillan led to friendship and – after Seillan visited California in 1997 – the birth of their joint venture, Vérité.

The vineyards are on the western slopes of the Mayacamas Mountains in Sonoma, spread across Knights Valley, Chalk Hill, Alexander Valley and Bennett Valley. The original plots were part of Jackson Family Wines’ existing vineyards, selected by Seillan, with some additional vines planted by Seillan.

Seillan feels that the variety of terroir in Sonoma allows for more varietal expression than Bordeaux. The cooling influence of the Pacific is key, as are the region’s steep slopes (some with a 35% gradient), producing detailed, elegant and profound wines that are marked by Sonoma terroir.

From the beginning, Seillan felt that fruit grown in Sonoma shouldn’t and couldn’t be handled in the same way as that from Bordeaux.

The tannins were not as structured or astringent, and the typically long macerations of Bordeaux risked over-extraction. With the more intensely flavoured fruit, he opts for shorter macerations.

The fermentations are all inoculated with the same yeast. Free-run and press fractions are separated, meaning the team works with over 100 different lots. Only when the winemaking team feels they are ready do they start the extensive blending process. The wines spend around 15 to 17 months maturing in French oak, almost entirely new.

The oak comes from the Jackson Family’s own cooperage – allowing Seillan total control over the wood used. He opts for long-aged, tight grain and a light toast, so that – even when using 100% new oak – it doesn’t dominate the wine. The wine has been made in a modest winery for decades, however construction of a new, state-of-the-art facility is underway.


Please wait

We are preparing your content...