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Timeless Love and Timeless Wine

On August 20th, Fred and Sally Schweiger will be celebrating their 55th Anniversary. 55 years of timeless, selfless, dedicated love for each other, their family, and Schweiger Vineyards, which they spent the early part of those 55 years building from the ground up. If you’ve ever visited us for a tasting, you’ve probably met Fred or Sally, and you know just how great they are — funny, kind, hardworking, and fantastic storytellers. To celebrate Fred and Sally’s big day, we’ll be releasing a wine that’s velvety, classic, extremely small production, and our first Cabernet released from this vintage — the 2016 Montaire. Read about the meaning and making of this incredible Cabernet and its upcoming limited release on the 20th. You don’t want to miss it.

In the words of Andy, “It’s only fitting we release this wine on their anniversary. When they walk into the kitchen every morning for their cup of coffee, they’re looking out on the Montaire block.”

Montaire’s magical 8-acre section of the vineyard is the original property purchased by Fred and is located just outside his and Sally’s home. The soil in this part of the vineyard is heaven for grapevines. The ancient white volcanic ash is a loose soil type, which means roots have the freedom to penetrate very deeply. Our entire estate is dry-farmed, but the Montaire section thrives even in the hottest and driest of years. The fruit boasts our most gentle and subtle velvety textures, a quality very important to Andy when he’s creating our finished Cabernet blends and Dedication.

Our first vintage of Montaire was in 2009. At the time, it was called “Legacy.” Another winery trademarked the name, so we changed it to Montaire, an obfuscation of the Latin root Montare, which roughly translates as either the highest mountain peak or the pinnacle of perfection. The inspiration behind Montaire (as well as our Gate Block) was our earliest bottlings of Cabernet Sauvignon from 1994.

In those early years, Andy says that Fred made it quite clear, “I don’t know winemaking, but I know I grow great grapes…so none of that Mickey Mouse blending you do at other wineries, just 100% Cabernet or 100% Merlot.”

But over time, Andy started to show his dad how they could introduce more layering and complexity to Cabernet with as little as 1-3% Merlot…and in some vintages, just a pinch of Malbec. Montaire is a throwback to an era when something labeled as Cabernet was 100% Cabernet. Montaire Cabernet Sauvignon is one of our smallest production wines. It’s very special, but Andy will not make it if it means the quality of our other wines suffers. “I’ll run trial blends to see if I can still create the same quality Cabernet or Dedication after removing one or two barrels to go to Montaire or Gate. If I can’t pull it off, then we won’t bottle a Montaire or Gate.” We make the best of the best, or we don’t make it at all.

This dedication to craft (no pun intended) is something Andy loves about his parents’ relationship. “55 years is a long time together. Mom and Dad’s faith in God, trust in each other, and stick-to-it-iveness have inspired me. I’m an ‘in it for the long haul’ kind of guy.” The 2016 Montaire is the 7th of its kind and will be the first Cabernet released from Schweiger out of the 2016 vintage. Only 516 bottles and 30 magnums exist.

This special release will open to our Club Members on Fred & Sally’s 55th Anniversary, August 20th, 2021. After a few hours, we will offer any remaining wine to our general mailing list. The last time we held a limited release was with our 2009 Iteration, and it sold out in 45 minutes. We’re expecting the 2016 Montaire to sell out similarly, and once it’s gone, it’s gone forever. Join our newsletter to follow this release or become a Member for exclusive access.

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