2019 Dalla Valle, Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) RP98+/LP98
2018 Dalla Valle, Maya, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) RP100/JD100
2016 Dalla Valle, Maya, Napa Valley, Magnum (1.5L) RP100/JD100
2016 Dalla Valle, Maya, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) RP100/JD100
2016 Dalla Valle, Maya MDV, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) AG100
2008 Dalla Valle, Maya, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) RP96
2001 Dalla Valle, Maya, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) RP98
1999 Dalla Valle, Maya, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) RP97/JD97
1998 Dalla Valle, Maya, Napa Valley, Bottle (750ml) RP95

The Dalla Valle Maya - Unraveling The Allure Of Dalla Valle's Iconic Wine

In the picturesque landscape of Napa Valley, one name consistently stands out as a beacon of winemaking brilliance: Dalla Valle. At the heart of their portfolio, the Dalla Valle Maya emerges as a true masterpiece, a Bordeaux-style blend that has garnered international acclaim for its complexity, finesse, and the sheer artistry that defines each bottle. This unique wine reflects the family's dedication to excellence and their profound connection to the land.

The Story of A Family Estate

Gustav and Naoko initially ventured to Napa Valley, from ventures in Tokyo and SCUBA diving in the Mediterranean, with ambitions of establishing a luxury resort featuring a restaurant. Their introduction to a promising piece of land on the eastern hillsides, facilitated by real estate agent Jean Phillips (later the founder of Screaming Eagle) and Ren Harris (owner of Paradigm Winery), led them to purchase a small parcel with rugged, iron-rich soils above Oakville. As they delved into the challenges of constructing a resort and discovered the potential of their soil for cultivating premium grapes, the Dalla Valles altered their course. Despite facing discouragement from experts cautioning against grape planting on these demanding slopes due to the increased labor and lower yields, they tenaciously shifted gears and embraced winemaking as their new endeavor.

After Gustavos death, Naoko took the reins into her own hands and, eventually alongside her daughter Maya, continued to steer the estate towards new heights, honoring the vision set forth by Gustav.

The People Behind the Wine

Naoko Dalla Valle - Founder, Farmer, and Proprietor

Since establishing Dalla Valle Vineyards in 1986, Naoko has been the driving force propelling the winery to prominence, quietly earning acclaim as one of Napa Valley's most esteemed vintners. In her role, she has not only solidified Dalla Valle as a beloved fixture in the New World's winemaking landscape but has also cultivated a legendary status for the estate's Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. As a dedicated farmer and firm believer in the notion that exceptional wines originate in the vineyard, Naoko's hands-on approach is evident through her daily presence in the vineyard, guiding every decision with her three decades of winegrowing expertise to uphold the pinnacle of quality.

Maya Dalla Valle – The Winemaker

Destined to be a winemaker from birth, Maya's connection to the vineyard runs deep. Joining the family business in 2017, Maya brings a wealth of knowledge and experience, earned through the highest form of oenological education and working at iconic wineries worldwide, such as Ornellaia e Masseto, Bodegas Rolland, Pétrus, and Château Latour.

Her journey into the world of wine began with a childhood steeped in the rhythms of nature. Growing up amidst the vineyards, she vividly recalls the cycles of the seasons, not only within the vines but also in the family's vegetable garden and orchard. Her first encounter with wine was a sensory exploration guided by her parents, who introduced her to the art of tasting at a young age. Reflecting on those early memories, Maya notes in an interview with “Spirited”, "I was pretty gourmand as a kid (I ate everything!) and was fascinated by the flavors and complexities of wine." This early exposure laid the foundation for her appreciation of the intricate nuances that define exceptional wines.

As the daughter of successful winemakers, Maya's journey into winemaking might seem predestined. However, she emphasizes that she never felt pressured to follow in her parents' footsteps. Growing up in Napa Valley, she explored various interests before finding her way back to the family vineyard.

Maya fondly remembers roaming the property with her father, surveying the vines on an ATV, and playfully attempting to lay claim to wine boxes adorned with her name. Despite the initial divergence, she found herself drawn to the allure of Napa Valley and the wine business after studying International Relations at the University of Washington. The turning point came during harvest at Neyers Vineyards in 2009, sealing her fate and solidifying her commitment to winemaking.

After earning a master’s degree in viticulture and enology from Cornell University, and a Master of Business and Science degree in vineyard and winery management from France’s prestigious Bordeaux Science Agro, she worked at a variety of the world’s most iconic wineries and officially became Dalla Valle’s winemaker in 2021. Maya is now crafting the next generation of magnificent wines and is honored to carry forward the family's legacy.

Dalla Valle is my home. It is also my family’s legacy. “I am so excited to be working alongside my mom. Dalla Valle is her life’s work, and what she has created is remarkable. I also know that the greatest wineries are judged in terms of decades and generations, and that our story is still being written. I am honored to be carrying our family’s legacy into a second generation.” – Maya Dalla Valle

Heidi Barrett – Winemaker

One of Heidi Barrett’s most celebrated creations was the renowned "Maya" cult wine, a distinctive Cabernet blend that earned two flawless 100-point scores from the discerning palate of Robert Parker (for the '92 and '93 vintages).Simultaneously, her winemaking journey led her to Screaming Eagle in 1992, where her talent continued to shine. The wines produced under her guidance garnered two perfect 100-point scores (for the '92 vintage and the recent '97), solidifying her reputation as a maestro of crafting exquisite and highly sought-after wines.

Andy Erickson - Consulting Winemaker

Renowned winemaker Andy Erickson (Screaming Eagle, Harlan, Ovid…) joined Dalla Valle in 2007, drawn by the opportunity to work with the exceptional vineyard. Collaborating with Naoko and Maya, Erickson crafts wines that embody the unique character and complexity of Dalla Valle's terroir.

The Dalla Valle Maya

Since its founding in 1986 the winery has consistently produced wines that embody the rich character and complexity of their meticulously tended vineyards. At the forefront of their portfolio is the iconic Dalla Valle Maya, named after Gustav and Naoko’s daughter Maya, a Bordeaux-style blend that reflects the family's dedication to excellence and their profound connection to the land.

Terroir and Vineyard Management

The foundation of Maya's excellence lies in the Oakville terroir. Dalla Valle's vineyard, spanning a modest 20 acres, is an exemplar of precision farming, mirroring the care bestowed upon First Growth sites. At elevations reaching 450 feet, the vineyard strategically balances between valley floor and mountainous terrain. The western side bathes the vines in abundant sunshine, while breezes from the San Pablo Bay impart a cooling influence, preserving natural acidity in the grapes. The distinct mineral-rich volcanic soils offer ideal drainage, fostering vines that yield profoundly complex and concentrated grapes.

The vineyard's commitment to sustainability is showcased through organic farming since 2007, now transitioning to biodynamic practices. This holistic approach integrates cover crops, natural soil amendments, and meticulous care, reflecting a multigenerational ethos.

The Alchemy Behind the Wine

Guided by the skilled hands of winemaker Andy Erickson, the winemaking process for Maya is a delicate dance between tradition and innovation. Small yields, careful grape selection, and meticulous sorting precede a fermentation and aging process that takes place in French oak barrels. The result is a wine that seamlessly marries power and elegance, with a rich tapestry of flavors that evolve gracefully over time.

Global Presence - DVO Collaboration

In a noteworthy collaboration, Dalla Valle partnered with Ornellaia in Tuscany, crafting DVO from Napa Valley grapes. This venture, blending Old and New World expertise, showcases the estate's global resonance.

A Wine Transcending Generations

As Dalla Valle's story continues, it intertwines the legacies of Gustav and Naoko with the innovative spirit of Maya, creating wines that transcend generations. In every bottle, Dalla Valle invites enthusiasts to savor the elegance, complexity, and the enduring spirit of Napa Valley winemaking.

“I don't think I need to reinforce the fact that these offerings are extremely difficult to find , but isn't that the way it always is with such extraordinary wines?”

~ Robert M. Parker Jr.

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