(pictured: Winemaker Mike Clark)
At Clos du Soleil, they have a distinct approach to the tasting room experience. Rather than the emphasis being on simply tasting the wine, they provide a personal and informative encounter with their wines that encompasses all facets of running of the vineyard. This from-the-ground-up practice encourages visitors to learn to appreciate the dynamics of winemaking from the experts who work directly with the vines and in the cellar.
Tours of the estate are available for booking. However, the vineyard wants to foster a casual approach where visitors feel free to wander the grounds and engage with the staff. This is a winery that promotes a solid understanding of all aspects of winemaking and wants to take the mystique out of the procedure. Here the philosophy is not just about selling wine but engaging in its creation. It’s the difference between buying strawberries from California from an unknown source or buying them from the farmer you chat with every week in the market.
Visitors are welcome to linger, have a picnic on their beautiful grounds. There’s no need to feel hurried. The winery has a large selection of locally sourced, traditional, picnic-style meals that are perfect for sharing. There’s plenty of space for the kids to run around so you can relax and enjoy the surroundings. All ages are welcome here.
This informal approach extends to the tasting room. Unlike some wineries, here they want visitors to enjoy the full range of their wine library. This means they’re happy to share with you their old vintages and even award-winning wines —like their 2013 vintage of Signature, which was awarded a silver medal and a 91-point score from Decanter Magazine at the 2017 Decanter World Wine Awards, confirming it as one of the highest quality wines in the world.