The People

The family behind J. Cage cellars are Austin natives! Roger & Donna Beery were drawn to northern Sonoma County for different reasons. Their son, Conch, studied winemaking and settled there to hone his skills. Daughter, Whitney came to build a career in wine hospitality. Together, the family is chasing their “Wine-Stained Dream” of creating exceptional wines with integrity and passion. 

While it might seem unlikely that a family from Austin named “Beery” would go into winemaking in northern California, their roots are planted deeply in the Texas Hill Country. J. Frank Cage was Roger’s great grandfather. Mr. Cage was a craftsman, a builder, and an avid outdoorsman who hunted and fished throughout the area. He designed and built Austin’s historic Lamar Boulevard Bridge, noted for its Art Deco-style open-spandrel architecture and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The Beery family has been inspired by J. Frank Cage’s commitment to craftsmanship and are indebted to the legacy he left them. This spirit shows in the wines of J. Cage Cellars. At Blurred Vines we love great wines that are made by interesting people. We consider the Beerys to be part of our extended family. 

The Juice

This single-vineyard pinot noir, very Burgundian in style, sits at the intersection of new-world and old-world wine. It comes from one of the most coveted vineyards in Sonoma County and is a blend of six different clones of this traditional varietal. The Van Der Kamp pinot is a double gold medal winner with a rating of 95 points. We have found no other wine with a better price to value ratio than this one. 

The Dirt

The Van Der Kamp vineyard sits at an elevation of 1,500 feet. The site is considered a sacred place by local Native Americans who believe the top of Sonoma Mountain is where the world began. It is one of California’s oldest Pinot Noir vineyards, with current plantings from 1952. This dramatically sloping vineyard focuses on environmental sustainability and the unique needs of each individual vine. The patchwork of soil types includes loam with volcanic material and decomposed riverbed. The topsoil is very thin, leading to a more structured wine and a very unique terroir. “The best fertilizer for a vineyard” 

The Taste

Bright ruby color. Aromas of ripe cranberry, pomegranate, creme Anglaise, oregano, and aniseed with a velvety, vibrant, light-to-medium body and a warming, layered, long baklava, cinnamon confection, spray roses, raspberry sorbet, and dark chocolate finish with light oak flavor. A spectacularly nuanced Pinot Noir that explodes on the palate; deeply enjoyable.

The Spill

As our resident expert, sommelier Malon Lemoins loves this wine almost as much as he loves his dog. Pinot Noir styles vary widely from region to region and this J. Cage is a blend of California fruitiness with a French expression of terroir. Malon said, “I love the hand-made nature of this wine. The care taken by the family to farm organically and the simplicity of the wine making process produces something to be truly appreciated. Every bottle is a work of art.” When I dream about my own label, this is what I dream about producing. He also loves the Beery family story and is happy to be supporting fellow Austinites, even those that buck the typical immigration pattern. 

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