Founded by Joe Donelan, who now runs the business alongside his sons Cushing and Tripp, Donelan is a small, boutique Sonoma winery producing Syrah, Grenache, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Roussanne and Viognier. Producing just 8,000 cases per year they prize quality over all other factors. They are becoming known for their exceptionally small-release bottlings of vinous experimentations: clonal varietals, site specific variations and the like. This factor has turned them from being a first-class winery into also being internationally recognised for leading this type of small-batch production.
"The 2011 Cuvee Keltie, which came in under 14% alcohol, spent 22 months in neutral wood, and 100% whole stems were used. The wine reveals a chocolaty, smoky, bacon-scented nose that at first suggests a French Cote Rotie, but as it hits the palate with its full-bodied creme de cassis, blackberry, charcoal and graphite personality, it moves more toward a single vineyard Hermitage from the likes of Chapoutier. This supple, rich 2011 can be drunk now or cellared for a decade." 93 Points Robert M Parker jr, The Wine Advocate, 2012-2022