2009 Diligence Marsanne
"It was a passion for Rhone varietals that led winemakers Dave Miner and Francois Villard to make this Marsanne. The fruit for these wines come exclusively from the Stagecoach Vineyard, which inspired the name "La Diligence" meaning "The Stagecoach" in French. This wine spends 5 months in French Burgundian Cooperage oak about which 40% is new. 400 cases produced." -Winery
"French for 'stagecoach', La Diligence is a terroir- and varietal-intense, integrity-driven partnership between Dave Miner of Miner Family Vineyards and Northern Rhone impressario Francois Villard. Born and raised in Chicago, Miner entered the wine business in 1993 as President of Oakville Ranch Vineyards following a career in the software industry. He launched Miner Family with the 1996 vintage and critical acclaim has confirmed Miner as a serious vintner in Oakville. An outstanding vintner and driving force in the Northern Rhone Valley, Francois Villard consistently produces celebrated bottlings of Condrieu, Cote-Rotie, and Saint Joseph."
"According to Robert Parker: 'Villard is one of the young, serious producers who has an intellectual as well as artistic approach to making Condrieu. His wines are given extensive lees contact, with certain cuvees aged in 100% new oak, and bottled with minimal processing. They are expressionistic, firmly structured Condrieus that stand apart in a tasting for both their power and concentration.'"
"To round out the production team, Miner Family winemaker Gary Brookman complements Villard on La Diligence. Brookman cut his teeth making wine beginning in 1980 at Joseph Phelps, refining his skills with each passing harvest and eventually nurturing a passion for wild yeast fermentation. At Miner Family since its inception, Brookman pursues a vision of bottled harmony that includes capturing the character and essence of the vineyards." -Winery