Viader is a boutique California winery nestled in the foothills of the Howell Mountain Region of Napa Valley. This week they brought their wines to Dallas for a tasting. I was honored to be invited to the dinner and tasting which took place at Bijoux, Scott and Gina Gottlich’s gem of a restaurant in Inwood Village. Predictably, the dining room was packed, reflecting the local following for both Viader and Bijoux. Guest of honor was Janet Viader, Director of Sales and Marketing for Viader and daughter of founder Delia Viader.
Viader produces just a few thousand cases year from their 30-acre vineyards set in one of the most picturesque parts of California wine country. They are at 1,200-ft elevation on the road to the peak of Howell Mountain. Their focus is on the Bordeaux grapes of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Petite Verdot. They also make a little Syrah and Tempranillo (the latter from purchased grapes). In addition to the flagship Viader label, they also produce a second label, ‘Dare’. We dared to taste two of these wines as well.
It was obvious from the beginning that people where excited about this tasting. As the wine tasting progress, the amount of chatter in the dining room increased. The 2007 Viader, Napa Valley was the wine of the evening. This blend of 71% Cabernet Sauvignon and 29% Cabernet Franc has a nose of dark fruit with hints of chocolate. In the mouth it has ample body, intense forward sweet fruit with a hint of stewed raspberry. All this leaves to a harmonious finish. New oak is kept at about 50% which is modest for a premium Napa Valley red wine. It was paired expertly with braised veal cheeks by chef Scott Gottlich.