Wine is a message from mother nature to us, and we – the winemakers – are the messenger.
In each of our bottles is the story of a summer’s rain, an autumn’s harvest,
and the loving toil of our people.

Wealth of experiences

“I have a lot of respect for the past, and value tradition more than most. Traditions are built on experience, and there is nothing more valuable in winemaking.” – Kale Anderson

2021 is Kale Anderson’s first vintage at Duncan Peak, but it is his 25th vintage in Napa Valley. He had created many 90+ score wines under his label, Kale Wines, and others. He has worked for auspicious wineries like Pahlmeyer, Cliff lede and Colgin, establishing his preeminent reputation over the years.

When Max and Jane re-started Duncan Peak wines in 2021, they created their label to make rare and remarkable wines bearing the finest organic fruit from their property.

Kale brings together his experiences working at different sizes of wineries with a proudly local sensibility. A local California, Kale pours his respect for tradition and the land that has been his home all his life.


Hand-picked, hand-sorted

At Duncan Peak, we only hand-pick our grapes. Handpicking reduces damage to berry and maintain vines’ health. More importantly, handpicking allows us to be more selective with the grapes going into our wines – inferior grapes never enter the juice, meaning our wine never requires corrections or additives to cure inferior flavors.

Hand-picking is more labor-intensive and expensive than machine picking, but we take the extra time to preserve the integrity of our vines and wine. Our grapes undergo two sorting periods to ensure product quality. The first sorting happens at harvest when the picker throws out any damaged clusters or leaves. The second sorting occurs at the sorting table during crushing, which our expert winemakers and cellar workers usually conduct. A final sort of all the grapes occurs before the fermentation to remove the MOG Materials from the fruit. By the end of the sorting process, only grapes enter the oak barrels for fermentation.


Small batch fermentation

At Duncan Peak, no batch of wine is the same. We break down our five lots into “slices and dices” for fermentation and craft each lot differently. When combined, the unique profile of each lot contributes to the finished wine’s overall complexity.

Creating vibrant and unique flavors is key to our brand. Therefore, we use different yeast strains and implement other winemaking practices in every lot based on their soil profile and health. As a result, each lot is one-of-a-kind, and we select only the most premium ones to make our final blend.

Our barrels evolve differently over time because of the small batch process – we separate the free run and press lots as the wine is pressed off its skin to bring out its true character and flavor during aging. Small-batch fermentation requires extensive labor and attention from the winemaker because fermentation moves at different speeds, but it is well worth the effort.


Premium NEW French oak barrel

When wine ages or matures in oak barrels, it absorbs some of the wood’s flavors and aromas. Our wines’ hints of aromatic spices, rich coffee, and chocolate flavors come from our oak barrels. So critical are oak barrels in developing a wine’s flavor that our wine spends 90% of its life in a barrel before bottling.

We pride ourselves on the quality of our materials and work with the world’s top french cooperage companies to find them. Our team is incredibly selective when choosing oak barrels. We select only the best French Oak capable of retaining the terroir characteristics of our vintage while providing the olfactory complexity and rich, rounded flavors that define our wines.

Decision based on Taste and number

Kale Anderson, our remarkable winemaker, has said, “I make wine with my senses, and I use science to gauge risk.” Some winemakers claim the craft is an art form, others a science. We believe winemaking combines both.

Winemaking is art influenced by the expertise and senses of the winemaker, who must hone the natural flavors of grapes and the soil into its final product. However, it is also science reliant on chemical reactions, acidity, and timing.

When deciding what products to bottle, our decision is based 70% on taste and the instinct of our winemaker. We base the other 30% on science and the acidity of our wine. Our decision process is hands-on; we smell and taste grapes, juice, and wine throughout the creative process.

Ultimately, all the essential steps in winemaking (such as harvest time, blending, and aging) culminate in the delicious first taste of the vintage.