Today Adam and Diana Lee sent out the below email announcing their sale. The couple moved from Texas to California and started making wine in 1994. They named their winery after a character in the Epic of Gilgamesh. Siduri is an "alewife", a wise female divinity associated with fermentation. They also played a great prank on Rajat Parr relating to balance and alcohol levels.
Dear Siduri & Novy Friends,
As you know, over the past 21 years, we’ve pursued one goal – to make the finest possible wine from each of our vineyard sites. For us, those aren’t just some words on paper; it really has been our dream to make that one “perfect wine” form that one “perfect place”. It probably is an impossible dream; an unattainable goal that we’ve set for ourselves to push us forward. We’ve used that goal to help motivate us through those times when we had to use picking bins as cribs for our children while we sorted grapes. It’s the same driving force that has motivated us to wake up in the middle of the night and trek three hours to Santa Lucia Highlands to check sugars; or spend the night on sleeping bags in a cold cellar to do 2am punchdowns. We’ve always believed in “the perfect Pinot Noir” from a particular place and we’ve always pursued that goal fervently.
Over those same 21 years we have sent you some pretty monumental messages, like when we announced the births of our sons, Christian and Truett, and our daughter Amber. Today we are sending you another important message. After much careful consideration and deliberation, we have decided to sell the winery, actually both wineries, Siduri and Novy, to Jackson Family Wines. We’re sure this news comes as a big surprise to you and probably leaves you with a mix of emotions. Trust us; we’ve been on an emotional rollercoaster lately, feeling excitement, trepidation, and of course a little sadness. But please let us explain why we are excited more than anything and why we believe you should be as well.
Over the last several years, however, we have found it more difficult to pursue the goal of that perfect Pinot Noir. The constant need to be on the road to sell wine, or online marketing and communicating via social media coupled with the financial and logistical challenges of making so many different lots of wine from so many different places, have all combined to make it harder and harder to truly focus on the ethereal goal of making “the best wine.” That said, we honestly think we’ve made some of our finest wines over the last couple of vintages, but it has been truly exhausting.
So, when we were approached by Jackson Family Wines, we decided to talk with them. And, after we talked with them we were excited, and so we talked with them some more, and then a whole lot more (there’s been a lot of talking over the last few months). Just as importantly, we tasted their wines. We tasted some of the new wines they’ve been making at places like Hartford Court, Wild Ridge, and Champ de Rêves. We came to believe that the best way of pursuing our dream of making that perfect vineyard-designated wine was to sell both Siduri and Novy to Jackson Family in a deal that keeps me on as winemaker. That way, their resources can be brought to bear on the sales, marketing, business and logistics of producing Siduri and Novy, freeing me up to focus on the winemaking. In simple terms, we’ve always been more winemakers than winery owners, and this allows us to concentrate on doing just that.
So what does this mean for you, our devoted customers? Honestly, not much. We are still here, in a big warehouse on Airway Court, same as before. All of the people that you’ve dealt with in the past are here as well. Give us a call or drop us an email, you’ll hear back from us. In the near future, it will hopefully mean an easier system of ordering our wines, more timely tasting notes, and all sorts of improvements in the way we communicate with you.
From a wine point of view, the wines that we will be offering you are the wines that we’ve produced and bottled before the sale. We are incredibly excited about the 2013 and 2014 vintages, and know that you will be as well. Looking ahead to the 2015 wines, we believe this new arrangement will mean more of my time spent in the vineyard during the growing season, more ability to concentrate of the nuances of each section of each vineyard, and the ability to take all that we’ve learned about grape growing and winemaking over 21 years, and bring that knowledge to bear on a great set of grapes. That opportunity is truly exciting to us and we hope that it will be to you as well. So please stay with us as we move ahead on this journey. The goals we hold remain the same, but we believe that our ability to reach them has exponentially increased.
Adam & Dianna Lee