Our Place in the Valley: Oakville AVA with Samantha Rudd and Joyce Stavert
We stay hyper-local in this episode and talk with a few acclaimed guests from the Oakville area. My co-host Jean-Charles and I talk about the unique and highly sought-after grape-growing region then we taste a single Oakville wine in this episode: the 2015 Raymond Vineyards Oakville District Collection Cabernet Sauvignon. The lush and rich, dark red wine is soul-satisfying and pairs great with grilled filet mignon.
This episode is made possible by Oakville Grocery, part of Boisset Collection, a portfolio of wineries and lifestyle destinations with strong historical and family roots.
We move into a conversation with Rudd Estate Vintner Samantha Rudd, daughter of the late Leslie Rudd. By the age of eight, Rudd knew confidently that she would devote her life to wine, after her family bought the iconic estate in Oakville and relocated from Wichita by way of Aspen. Their empire included not only the winery and Press restaurant, but also the Oakville Grocery, which she sold to Jean-Charles and Boisset Collection. Rudd adores being a landowner and tending to the estate sustainably for future generations to enjoy. Rudd crafts a lovely fresh white wine with fruit from Mount Veeder, and her red wines are all made with grapes grown on her organic and biodynamic estate. In total, she produces 4,000 cases, with the Rudd Estate Bordeaux blend the most representative of the Rudd Estate’s iron-rich soil and rocks. Hear more about several of their other labels: Samantha’s Cabernet (launched in 2008) and a second label, Crossroads, re-launched in 2019.
Next, we sit down with Joyce Stavert, Executive Director of the Oakville Winegrowers. Stavert shares with us the distinctions in soil, location and orientation that make the coveted Oakville AVA so unique. Her rich expertise comes in part from work at two acclaimed Oakville Vineyards: Robert Mondavi and Far Niente. Stayed tuned to hear more on the special wine project launched by the winegrowers association in 2005: a collaborative, limited production called the Oakville Cuvée, a blend of wine from a group of local Oakville winemakers who each contribute five gallons for the blend.
Thanks for listening, and stay tuned for more shows in the coming weeks. Please share across your social media channels and subscribe to get each new episode directly to your podcast feed. You can find Napa Sonoma magazine on newsstands, subscribe here, or read the digital edition online.