An amazing adventure…and second chapter of our lives!

2012 | A Dream Realized

Ciento Cellars Family

The Ciento Cellars dream started on an old cattle ranch in 2012. We’ll never forget the day we found our future home. As we climbed 800 feet up the narrow, rutted goat-track of a driveway, the views exploded before our eyes! And when we reached the summit where Ciento Cellars currently sits, we were in awe, marveling at the 360-degree views. We knew we were in love, but had to prove out the soils and the water before we could confidently move forward. Fortunately, we are blessed by two fantastic wells and incredible calcareous limestone soils that are so emblematic of the special terroir of the westside of Paso Robles.

2019 | Putting Down Roots

2019 photo colllage: family, vineyard and Dave at Denner

After seven long years of dreaming, planning and raising our young twin boys, we finally planted our estate vineyard in the Spring of 2019. Inspired by a handful of incredible winemakers in Paso Robles who craft wines from both Rhone and Bordeaux varietals, we planted our fourteen acres to seven varietals. On the Rhone side of things, we planted Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre, as well as a less well-known varietal, Cinsault, a grape that brings spice, floral aromatics and elegance that compliments bolder red varietals. On the Bordeaux side of things, we planted Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Our intention with all of this was to create as vibrant a spice rack as possible for creating incredible red blends, but also to give ourselves lot of avenues for experimentation beyond more traditional blending components. Dave worked his first harvest internship with Anthony Yount at Denner.

2020 | The Journey Begins

2020 photo collage: planting the vineyard and Dave with Stephan

Our estate vineyard entered its first leaf since planting, not producing much fruit yet as we pruned the vines back to two buds to focus the plants’ energy on their root systems and trunk. Importantly, we received our final winery permit from the County in December of 2020, a long 11 months after we first filed our application. Dave completed the rigorous 2-year UC Davis Wine Certificate program. Dave worked his second harvest internship for Stephan Asseo at L’Aventure.

2021 | Winery Construction

2021 photo collage: winery construction and Dave in front of wine barrels

After two years of planning and an arduous permitting process, we commenced construction of Ciento Cellars in 2021! The design inspiration for Ciento Cellars was a little church located in Tonia’s mother’s village in Durango, Mexico. From the stucco walls to the red roof tiles to the bell tower to the massive church doors, we attempted to be as faithful to the vision as possible. Of course, functionality and practicality had to be considered as this was the building in which we would spend the rest of our lives hand-crafting our estate wines. So, as traditional and old-world as the exterior of our little church is, the interior is adorned with more modern lines of distressed black metal, glass and stone. 2021 also marked our first ever harvest of fruit from our estate vineyard, fruit that was given (literally) to three young winemakers, Nick Elliott at Nicora, Orion Stang at Emercy and Alex Kemp at Terranean. Nick Elliott did us the honor this vintage of vineyard designating a bottling of 100% Ciento Vineyards fruit. Dave worked his third harvest internship for Guillaume Fabre at Clos Solene.

2022 | Second Harvest

2022 photo collage: the boys foot stomping and family in the vineyard

This year marked continued progress on the winery and also our second harvest of fruit. Dave worked harvest for Nick Elliott at Nicora, during which Dave crafted his first ever wines, barrel-fermenting one lot each of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre and Cabernet Sauvignon. Harvest was a joyous friends and family affair and we even cajoled our teenagers into helping with the winemaking process. Fruit from our vineyard was sold to several winemakers, including Nick Elliott of Nicora, Cliff Cate of Zobeto and Aurelien Crouzet, assistant winemaker at Clos Solene, for his personal project.

2023 | Amazing First Vintage

Ciento Cellars winery construction completion

Ciento Cellars hired its first (and currently only) employee, Jake Jorgensen, as our vineyard manager and assistant winemaker. We planted one last vineyard block, a tiny 1/3 acre block of Viognier directly below the winery, planted in the French echalas style. Construction of our winery was finally complete and signed off on in June, just in the nick of time! We spent July and August in a hurry-up offense taking delivery of and installing winery and crushpad equipment, sanitizing neutral and new barrels, learning about and testing everything, from the destemmer, to the optical sorter, to the basket press. 2023 turned out to be one of the coolest growing seasons in memory and harvest really didn’t get into full swing until October and fermentations were still bubbling at Thanksgiving. Fruit from our vineyard was sold to several winemakers, including Nick Elliott of Nicora, Cliff Cate of Zobeto, Aurelien Crouzet of Clos Solene and Varinder Sahi of Copia.

2024 | First Bottling

Ciento Cellars 2024 photo collage

We bottled our first ever Ciento Cellars wines, a white and rose that we made in the 2023 harvest and two red blends from the wines we made in the 2022 harvest. These red wines aged for 19 months in neutral (the Rhones) and new oak (the Cab) before bottling. We had a “soft open” for the winery tasting room as we get our feet under us and figure out our hospitality, ordering and fulfillment processes. We’re off and running!

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