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Conundrum Red Blend 2016
It all began at the dinner table. Charlie Wagner Sr. – who co-founded Caymus Vineyards in 1972 with wife Lorna and son Chuck – would mix wines to find the perfect glass to pair with his meal. No one blended wines back then, so his experiment was pretty radical. Fast forward to 1989, when Conundrum White was born, quickly taking off with its mysterious, tropical notes and amazing versatility. Since then, we have created Conundrum Red, Conundrum Blanc de Blanc and Conundrum Rosé.
Today it’s Charlie Sr.’s grandson and namesake, Charlie Wagner, who keeps Conundrum as inventive as ever. He loves how there are no rules when it comes to making these wines, and each has a unique style. They also share a tradition of showcasing the best wine regions California has to offer. We have ventured to vineyards from Napa to Santa Barbara County and everywhere in between in search of the best places to grow the varietals featured in each of our offerings. “Conundrum” means a riddle or puzzle, and it is endlessly intriguing to create wines that defy easy categorization, their blends never fully revealed but a mystery to be savored.
A major force on the global playing field, California is the world’s fourth largest wine-producing region on the planet and the majority of land under vine here is devoted to red varieties, covering nearly double the vineyard acreage of whites.
While the state’s incredibly diverse terrain and microclimates allow for countless red wine styles, the one factor unifying all California red wine is the abundance of sunshine and a long, consistent growing season, which leads to well-developed and fully ripened fruit.
Sonoma County, nestled between Napa Valley and the Pacific Ocean, claims great variability in geography and microclimates. Here world-class Pinot Noir is possible from Sonoma’s cooler sites while old, gnarly Zinfandel vines survived Prohibition.