Posted on February 17, 2021
Napa Valley, CA (February 17, 2021) – Acclaimed wineries Dalla Valle Vineyards of Napa Valley and Ornellaia of Tuscany have partnered to create DVO, a red wine based on Cabernet Sauvignon with a small addition of Cabernet Franc and draws on each estate’s passion for precision, expressiveness, and uncompromising quality. The inaugural vintage of this limited bottling, DVO 2018, will launch October 1, 2021.
DVO is conceptualized by second-generation winemaker Maya and founder and proprietor Naoko Dalla Valle, alongside winemaker Axel Heinz and CEO Giovanni Geddes da Filicaja of Ornellaia. These two parallel generations have come together to highlight their legacy and expertise in working with striking vineyards in Mediterranean climates, while looking ahead to the future of these iconic estates.
“With DVO, we are taking the essence of our two great estates and creating a singular wine that is distinctive and authentic to the vineyards we are sourcing from,” says Maya Dalla Valle, who oversees the day-to-day operations of DVO. “Axel and I, and by extension my mom and Giovanni, are looking to expand our communal understanding of Bordeaux varieties. We want to create a wine that balances the expressiveness of Napa fruit through the lens of European restraint.”
The friendship between the two estates began in earnest in 2013, when Maya met Axel during her harvest internship at Ornellaia, following her Master’s degree at Cornell University. After Maya enrolled at Bordeaux Sciences Agro, the two remained in close contact, with Axel mentoring her for her thesis. Upon returning to California, Maya and Naoko welcomed Giovanni Geddes de Filicaja for dinner; there, the idea of a collaboration was born out of their discussions surrounding both estates’ core value of farming first and the ties to Italy through the late Gustav Dalla Valle, Naoko’s husband and Maya’s father.
“DVO combines Napa Valley terroir with Italian inspiration. I’ve always had a passion for this rich terroir, and it is a pleasure for me to finally have the opportunity to make a wine there,” says Axel Heinz.
The quest for restraint is what led both teams to cooler Napa Valley sites, specifically hillsides and vineyards in the south end of the Valley: Coombsville, Mount Veeder and Oakville sites offer the refined character they are seeking to showcase in this wine. Axel comes to Napa Valley several times a year to visit the vineyards and discuss farming with Maya, and the two stay in regular contact, especially during harvest and winemaking.
The name “DVO” initially came about as a convenient, quick way to speak about the project. However, both estates agreed it was the perfect name: DVO is a simple but honest expression of the wineries’ philosophies in one bottle. Moreover, DVO written in the old Latin font on the wine’s label evokes the word “duo.”
While the first two vintages focus exclusively on Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, Merlot was added to the blend in 2020. To learn more about DVO, visit www.dvowine.com or follow @dvowine on Instagram.
About Dalla Valle Vineyards
Founded in 1986, Dalla Valle Vineyards one of world’s most celebrated wine estates located in Napa Valley’s famed eastern hillsides of Oakville. This preeminent multigeneration family-run winery has earned acclaim for producing wines of extraordinary character and complexity, vintage after vintage. Today, Dalla Valle is guided by the mother-and-daughter team of Naoko and Maya Dalla Valle, who steward every aspect of the viticulture and winemaking with a level of meticulous care and detail reserved for the great First Growths, to ensure Dalla Valle continues to thrive for generations to come.
The name Ornellaia is synonymous with fine winemaking and an authentic expression of the beauty of Tuscany. The estate consists of 115 hectares under vine along the Tuscan coastline, a short distance from the medieval town of Bolgheri and the iconic cypress-lined avenue. Ornellaia Bolgheri DOC Superiore is the estate’s top wine, followed by Le Serre Nuove dell’Ornellaia, Le Volte dell’Ornellaia and the whites Ornellaia Bianco and Poggio alle Gazze dell’Ornellaia. In little over thirty years (the first vintage of Ornellaia was in 1985), the team’s dedication accompanied by optimal geological and microclimate has resulted in critical acclaim and public success within Italy and internationally.