2014 is a milestone year for von Strasser Winery. Rudy and Rita bought their Diamond Mountain Estate in the spring of 1990, and the 2014 vintage represents the 25th vintage of the von Strasser winery. Originally the von Strasser brand consisted of only 1 wine: a Cabernet Sauvignon which came predominately from their estate. Over the years, as additional sources of fruit became available, the brand expanded. The current portfolio consists of three tiers of Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines: the Diamond Mountain District (DMD) Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel, six Single-Vineyard bottlings, and a Reserve. In addition, von Strasser was the first California winery to grow and produce Grüner Veltliner, and also produces small amounts of a port-styled wine made from Malbec.
One thing that has remained constant over much of their history is the fact that their wines continue to get extremely high accolades from the major wine press. 2014 has seen an explosion of praise. The wines from the 2010 and the 2011 vintage have received the highest scores in the winery’s history (link???). The Grüner Veltliner continues to turn heads, winning a Silver Medal at the AWC international blind tasting in Vienna Austria (Judgment of Paris: watch out..), and Rudy von Strasser has been voted as both ‘Winemaker of the Year’ by American Fine Wine Competition, and ‘Winery of the Year’ by Wine and Spirits magazine ( for an astonishing 12th time). To top of the 2014 accolades, their 2011 Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon was chosen as ‘Wine #38 of the top 100 Wines of the World’ by Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
However the true sign of success is not what wine-writers think, but what consumers think. In the past 25 year history, sales have progressed from being predominately made through wholesalers and retailers, to being made direct to an every-hungry fan base. The winery now boasts over 1000 members of their exclusive Diamond Cartel Wine Club (link), who have first access to these exclusive wines, and also visits to the winery’s charming tasting room and events.
A recent visitor to the winery wrote: this place is ‘Vonstrasserrific’. I think that statement nicely sums up the success of our first 25 years.
25th Anniversary Thoughts
25 years is a long time! For many people, 25 years spans the majority of their professional career. The average American family will have moved 4 times, changed jobs 6 times, and have owned 9 different cars.
However in the life of a winery, 25 years seems like a blink of an eye. The vines that we planted 25 years ago are just beginning to yield those intense, concentrated characteristics we associate with mature vines. In fact, their best years are still ahead of them. The wines we made those first few vintages are still aging gracefully and drinking wonderfully for those patient enough to have set some aside. The beautiful Estate that my wife and I envisioned when we bought this property is still evolving with each passing season. And the family that we have been blessed with continues to mature and thrive.
Since one’s 25th anniversary is great opportunity for reflection, we thought that we would take this opportunity to reflect upon and thank the two most important people that have made our ‘first’ 25 years possible. Firstly, a huge thanks to OUR FANS! It is you, our loyal clients that have afforded us the ability to build this Estate, plant and tend these special microclimates, and produce a product which we can all love and enjoy. It has been - and continues to be - a great ride for us. And we can honestly say that it would not have been possible, and also would not have been nearly as enjoyable, without having met all of you along the way.
The equally important group that has made this journey possible are the gifted employees that have helped us attain our vision. This winery is truly a labor of love. Over the years we have been blessed that so many passionate and talented people have joined us, and in doing so left their own special mark upon the experience that is von Strasser.
So please raise a glass of your favorite von Strasser wine with us and toast to the first 25 years. If you have a chance, please come visit us sometime over this celebratory year. If not, then feel free to share a memory of your relationship with our wines. We would love to hear from you. Click here to share your thoughts.