Matthew Richards started out brewing beer… and one thing led to another. Since 2008 he and his business partner Todd have been making quite a range of very impressive wines. At a recent gathering of wine club members and friends they were pouring at least eight different bottles or barrel samples; our notes document four whites and four reds, but we were having a very good time and may have left out a few. Wines bearing the Matthew Richards label come primarily from Northern California grapes: Napa, Edna Valley, Lake County… while San Diego Cellars features local fruit.
Honestly, we liked every single thing we tasted. The standouts include 2008 Edna Chardonnay – dry, very crisp, mineral-tinged; 2008 Edna Pinot Noir – grassy on the nose, it reminded us of an Oregon Pinot (or perhaps a pre-Sideways California one). We loved the deep, full 2008 San Diego Syrah; the 2009, not yet bottled, is even more impressive. Matt ages his wines exclusively in French oak barrels, some of which sport pretty cool paint jobs.
In the near future, Matt and Todd's enterprise will have a home in Little Italy at Kettner and Ivy. Right now they're tucked into an industrial park: 7919 Silverton Avenue, Suite 408. Open Fridays and Saturdays 3:30-7:30. 858.527.0944
The Matthew Richards/San Diego Cellars wine club offers a 20% discount on everything, free tastings for members and up to three guests, special wine offerings, and parties. Members can choose the amount of wine they would like to buy and request shipments tailored to their taste.