Kelly Fleming is living the dream(s) that so many wine lovers share. First, to own a vineyard / winery and second to build a family business, in touch with nature, to be shared with her children.
In 1998, Kelly purchased 300 acres near Calistoga where today you will find a twelve acre vineyard next to her small yet beautifully designed winery tucked up against the hillside. From the private tasting room you look through glass doors into a 7,000 square foot limestone wine cave cut into the hill. Kelly, as you will see, is a hands-on vintner who has no problem with dirty boots and vineyard dust on her hands.
Bacchus and Beery Wine Blog had the opportunity to meet Kelly in the summer of 2011 to share wine and stories. Kelly is very down-to-earth with a casual elegance, much like her wines. Her easy style combined with her passion for wine made for a lovely Sunday afternoon visit far away from the frenetic pace of so many winery tasting rooms.
Kelly Fleming Wines produces only two varietals, Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc. The first vintage was 2004. We enjoyed the 2009 Sauvignon Blanc’s beautiful balance with soft flavors of honeycomb, pear, pineapple, vanilla and honeydew melon. The Cabernet was well integrated with soft and supple tannins combined with flavors of dark cherry, dark berries, spice, and smoke with hints of cocoa and toasty vanilla.
The winery offers appointment tastings by contacting the winery. Elegant wines at a winery of understated elegance; Kelly Fleming Wines is a stop worth making.
B & B Wine Blog: Kelly, you are living the dream many of us have, to own our own winery. Tell us why you wanted to open a winery and how you made your dream into a reality.
KF:I wanted to continue to learn. Next I thought about my interest in food, wine and growing things. Once I found this land, the story evolved. First I was only thinking about planting grapes suited to the property. Once I got my hands dirty and spend time on the land, I was forever lost and consumed in farming. Once the grapes came, I contemplated the next step of wine production. After a few years of watching, I wanted to have the winemaking here in our control with our caring hands.