NEED TO UPDATE YOUR ACCOUNT INFORMATION?
LANDMARK WINE CLUB 2020 SCHEDULE
WINE CLUB EXCLUSIVE PICK UP EVENINGS
Join us this Winter in celebrating the release of our February Wine Club orders. Pasta La Vista will be onsite preparing a selection of delicious freshly cooked dishes for all three events.
Sat. Feb 8, Music by Dan Haas Band 6:00 – 9:00pm
Sat. Feb 15, Music by Jay Swanson 6:00 – 9:00pm
Sat. Feb 22, Music by Evan Cooper 6:00 – 9:00pm
All attendance is by RSVP only. Please check your emails from our Landmark Club Manager in January to RSVP online or email LandmarkClub@Boordy.com. This Winter invitation will be open to each member plus one guest.
WINTER WINE PACKAGES:
Winter 2020 Release
UPDATE ACCOUNT INFO: Before January 31, 2020
BILLING: Saturday, February 1, 2020
PICK-UP: February 1 – April 6
SHIP: Thursday, February 6
Happy Birthday Boordy . . . it’s your 75th anniversary!
While 75 years my not seem significant in an endeavor that is as old as recorded history (winemaking is depicted on mosaics in the tombs of the pharaohs), in the context of the fast moving, ever-morphing commercial landscape of the United States it’s no mean feat. Boordy, Maryland’s first commercial winery, got its officialstart in 1945 just as WWII came to a close, but it’s unofficial roots date back to the Prohibition era, which, you will recall, wiped out the American wine industry between the years 1918 – 1933. Through those dark days, Boordy’s founders practiced benign civil disobedience by supplying vines to backyard growers and a handy companion book, “American Wines and How to Make Them”. To say that the wine industry in the U.S. was in a primitive state in those years would be an understatement.
Boordy’s first commercial wines were made with hybrid vines imported directly from France; they were dry and fresh on the palate and were intended to be drunk young like any good “vin de pays”. Selling for around $2/bottle, they rapidly gained a following.
Our family began growing grapes for Boordy in 1965. Fifteen years later we purchased the name and equipment from the founders and moved the winery to our farm in the Long Green Valley. With its historic barns and ample land for vineyard expansion, the farm was the ideal setting for the next chapter in Boordy’s story. Since then, Boordy’s evolution has mirrored that of the national wine industry, with impressive investments in vineyards, equipment, and talented personnel, mirrored by equally impressive gains in the quality of our wines.
The Boordy story is a rich one, underpinned by family commitment, innovation, risk taking, and reward. It is a journey shared over seven and a half decades with our fellow Marylanders and folk beyond who have supported the adventure by purchasing our wines. While modest in scale, Boordy has proven more durable than the Soviet Union, the beehive hairdo, and the European Union, and has proven more financially stable than General Motors and Lehman Brothers.
The wine industry is one instance where age confers a distinct advantage, particularly in a region where much of our know-how derives from practice; to make the best wines we must commit to a lot of trial-and-error. Our soils and climate are distinct; we cannot parrot California or France. Time is on our side, allowing the knowledge that we have accumulated over the years to be passed from one generation to the next. While perhaps a bit trite, it’s not inappropriate to compare Boordy’s evolution to that of a fine wine aging in the bottle, whose trajectory is toward better and better quality.
I hope you enjoy this selection of Landmark wines. Thank you for sharing our journey, and please raise a glass to salute this milestone in Boordy’s history.
Rob Deford, president
Fall 2019 Whither the Weather
With the excellent 2019 vintage just completed and the new wines safely tucked away in our cellars, we now have the luxury to reflect upon broader issues, foremost among them being: “whither the weather?” The dramatically different personalities of the 2018 and 2019 vintages beg the question of whether our weather has come off the rails?
According to NOAA, “the difference between weather and climate is a measure of time”. Climate is the big picture, including average temperatures, rainfall, and length of growing season that characterize a region. A coastal state at the 39thparallel (sandwiched between Napa and Rome), Maryland has a climate whose broad metrics favor fine wine production.
The weather is what we talk (and complain) about on a daily, weekly, even monthly basis. So, when does weather become climate? When do fluctuations become so extensive that they warrant a recalibration in how we grow and make our wines? The reason this matters is that climate is the sine qua non of fine wine. All else is for naught if climate isn’t on our side.
Presently there are more questions than answers. Winemaking is at its heart an optimistic undertaking, and despite the perennial challenges and triumphs of weather (which have a history as old as wine itself), our belief in the fundamentals of Maryland’s climate is unshaken. Annual variability also has a silver lining: it insures against complacency in our work and bland consistency in our wines. Each vintage has a unique character, requiring an attentive, nimble approach to get the best result. At Boordy, now reaching our 75th year, we embrace this approach.
The 2019 vintage gave us a rare combination of fine quality fruit and abundant crops, so we will have much to celebrate beginning with the first white and rose wines to be released this spring, to the reserve reds which we look forward to sharing with you in 2022.
As always, we deeply appreciate the faith you place in our work through your membership in the Landmark Wine Club.
Rob Deford, president
Summer 2019 Not Reserved about Chardonnay Reserve
Chardonnay, the most widely planted white wine variety in the world, may be responsible for many bland, generic wines but it also produces rare and exquisite gems that are sought out by connoisseurs. This malleability is not a character deficit; it’s the secret to chardonnay’s appeal among winemakers. Chardonnay could be likened to a blank canvas upon which terroir (climate & geography) leave their imprint. Additionally, there are numerous clonal variants of chardonnay that range from high-yielding and insipid to finnicky, exotic, and flavorful. These two variables – terroir and clone – identify chardonnays from one vineyard or region to another and distinguish those which exhibit exquisite personality from the rest of the crowd.
Chardonnay is planted in both our Long Green and South Mountain vineyards. Long Green’s cooler conditions and more fertile soils yield chardonnay with tropical and citrus aromas and a medium to light body; these grapes are dedicated to our Icon Chardonnay. Our Chardonnay Reserve is sourced entirely from South Mountain where the growing season is longer and the soils poorer, yielding chardonnay with a more restrained aromatic profile and a mineral character which lingers on the palate. The harvest crew ducks under the trellis wires as they work down the rows, following a vein of impoverished soil where the best grapes are found. Tedious, back breaking work, yes, but it is the key to the rich, distinctive character of this wine.
The role of winemaking is critical. Careful blending of clonal lots and French oak barrel fermentation for six months add intrigue to both the aroma and flavor. To avoid over-extraction of wood flavors we use barrels ranging in age from new to five years. Hand stirring of the yeast “lees” (sediments) during this period contributes a rich “bready” nuance to the wine’s palate. Finally, we bottle age the wine for a year before release to harmonize its aromas and flavors.
An ocean of indifferent chardonnays has led to widespread fatigue among wine drinkers with this variety, but this misses the point. Chardonnay is, without a doubt, the greatest white variety in the world when grown in the right place and handled by talented winemakers. Boordy’s Chardonnay Reserve is such a wine, and a most worthy contribution to the noble legacy of this grape.
Rob Deford, president