About Dominus Estate
Tablas Creek’s limestone-rich 120-acre organic estate vineyard is located in the heart of the Adelaida District, in the hills north and west of Paso Robles, about 11 miles from the Pacific Ocean. Their viticulture practices emphasize quality through dry-farming and moderate crop levels. They farm organically, and received our organic certification in January 2003. Since 2010 they have incorporated many Biodynamic techniques across the vineyard, including their own mobile herd of sheep, alpacas and two guard donkeys, Fiona and Dottie. Their goal in our farming, as in their winemaking, is to maximize the expression of place from their vineyard, and to produce grapes full of intensity and character.
Like their viticulture, their winemaking decisions are made to preserve the wines’ expression of their place of origin. At harvest, each vineyard block is hand-harvested selectively, typically in 2-4 passes through each block.
White grapes are whole cluster pressed, and the juice is fermented in a mix of small and large French oak barrels, mostly neutral, and stainless steel. Red grapes are sorted and destemmed after harvest, and the juice and whole berries moved to stainless steel or 1600-gallon wooden upright fermenters. Because they believe that the collection of wild yeasts at the winery is unique, all Tablas Creek wines are fermented using only native yeasts.
During fermentation, the must is pumped over, punched down or broken up using compressed air twice a day. After about 10 days on the skins, red wines are pressed, and complete primary and secondary fermentation in neutral barrels. Both red and white wines, as is traditional in Châteauneuf du Pape, are blended the spring after harvest, with aromatic whites being moved to stainless steel tanks to settle briefly before bottling, and Roussanne-based whites and our reds aged for an additional year in 1200-gallon French oak foudres (left).