Ovid Napa Valley

Cult Wine: Ovid Napa Valley
Winemaker: Austin Peterson
Proprietors: Mark Nelson, Dana Johnson & Janet Pagano
Inaugural Vintage: 2005
Annual Production: 400-600 cases
Varietal: Bordeaux Blend
Appellation: Napa Valley
Other Wines: Yes, Two
Estate Vineyard: Yes
Grape Source: 100% Estate Grown


Ovid was a Roman poet who lived from 43 BC to 17 AD. His most famous work, Metamorphoses, is a poetic narrative of the Greek myths, celebrating themes of transformation and change. In transforming their estate-grown grapes to wine, Founders Mark Nelson and Dana Johnson's passion for the classics finds its ultimate expression in their Pritchard Hill estate vineyard, winery and wines. Working from the beginning with Janet Pagano, Managing Partner, they take meticulous care at every step, blending classical and modern methods of grape growing and winemaking. Their philosophy is best expressed by Ovid's Metamorphoses, quoted, in Latin, on every bottle: “Partly we recovered the olde, familiar things, partly we created something wondrous and new.”

Planted in 2000 by acclaimed vineyard manager David Abreu, Ovid's stunning, organically-farmed15-acre ridgetop estate vineyard is divided into one acre blocks, each with a different rootstock and clone combination of Bordeaux varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot. Each year, winemaker Austin Peterson and consulting winemaker Andy Erickson choose the best barrels from each block to achieve an ideal blend. While the proportions may vary from vintage to vintage, the Ovid wines consistently convey an eloquent and nuanced sense of place.

Ovid's beautiful light-filled winery overlooking the valley was designed by renowned architect Howard Backen. Leading Napa Valley in the resurgence of concrete fermentation tanks like those used in Bordeaux, Ovid uses custom-built concrete tanks and wood casks for fermentation. The winery’s gravity-flow wine making process is steeped in tradition, but its technology is state of the art. Ovid draws on a wealth of knowledge and beauty to create something truly “wondrous and new.”

Winery Website

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