I’ve been agonizing for weeks over what to write about Clos Pegase. Finally, I realized my struggle derives from the most obvious of things: there really isn’t much to criticize about this remarkable winery. Located in the northern end of Napa Valley, right across from Sterling, it makes a wine country excursion with sex-appeal.
The love-child of Jan and Mitsuko Shrem, (Jan made his fortune in publishing in Japan, where he met Mitsuko), this place offers high quality wine in a setting of magnificent art and architecture. The winery site says that Jan, in collaboration with the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, held a competition to design the winery and the couple’s home on the large property as a “temple to wine and art.” In that, the architect, Michael Graves, succeeded brilliantly.
There are many large contemporary sculptures scattered around the winery and along the edges of vineyards. Inside the building itself are many thrilling paintings. Some of these end up on the colorful labels of select Clos Pegase bottlings. All of the art comes from the Shrem private collections.
Ah, that is the life, don’t you think? Rich, happy in love, owning a fabulous art collection and an entire winery. Where do I sign up? Actually, I already have item two… but you know what I mean.
We tried several wines, all of which were good to very good. This place is worth a return trip.
2009 Sauvignon Blanc: This is transparent pale yellow with lots of exciting peach, pear and grapefruit notes on an almost creamy body.
2007 Hommage Chardonnay: A transparent honey yellow, much more creamy than the first, with lots of yellow fruit and not over-done.
2007 Syrah: Opaque purple with a nose of tobacco, spice box leading to a fruity core with supple tannins.
2007 Pegaso: This is a blend of zinfandel, syrah and petite sirah. This was an opaque red to purple with creamy texture, red and black stone fruit, full bodied wine.
2007 Cabernet Sauvignon: 100% cab, this dark opaque wine was rich in fruit without being overbearing, had hints of forest floor, with medium to full body, supple tannins and a decent finish.
We decided “it’s the new old world here” after enjoying these restrained expressions of California terroir. See for yourselves. You won’t be sorry.