by Fred McMillin
for August 6, 1997

Dan's Dandies


  • Winemaker Dan Goldfield starts at La Crema before the 1990 vintage.

  • "La Crema wines have shown a marked improvement in recent years"

    ...Prof. John Baxevanis in "Wine Regions of America"

The Rest of the Story: Dan's no dummy. He completed a double major in chemistry and philosophy before learning winemaking at U.C.-Davis graduate school. After time in the cellars at Schramsberg and Robert Mondavi, he joined La Crema. It was a perfect fit. His favorite wines were the Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs of Burgundy. Today, La Crema makes only Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Furthermore, Dan knows he can make better wines if he can draw his grapes from a variety of areas. Owner Jess Jackson's broad California holdings allow him to do just that. For example, his new 1995 Chardonnay used fruit not just from the local Russian River Valley, but from other cool, prime Chardonnay districts (Carneros, Edna Valley, etc.). Consequently, in the mouth you find a range from peach and pineapple to grapefruit and lime. Clearly, it's one of Dan's Dandies...highly recommended.

1995 100% Chardonnay (Russian River, Carneros, etc.)
La Crema Winery
Martinelli Road, Forestville, Russian River Valley, CA
Contact—Marcia Brinker, (707)544-4000

Postscript: Dan's Plans
Look for further complexity and balance in the future. Dan advises that even as we speak, La Crema is acquiring new grape sources and planting vines in promising locations.

About the Writer

Fred McMillin, a veteran wine writer, has taught wine history for 30 years on three continents. He currently teaches wine courses at San Francisco State and San Francisco City College and is Northern California Editor for American Wine on the Web. In 1995, the Academy of Wine Communications honored Fred with one of only 22 Certificates of Commendation awarded to American wine writers.

Read more articles by Fred McMillin in the eGGsf

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