Leo Steen was born in Denmark to a hotelier father and from a young age was immersed in the world of fine wine and food. His first job was in his father's hotel kitchen at the age of twelve, the beginning of a career that would take him across the globe as a certified sommelier, directing some of the world's best wine programs. Some of his stints were in California where he noticed something that had troubled him in Europe as well. That there was a decided lack of food-friendly, energetic wines from California. He explored the golden state looking for wines that fit the bill and quickly came across what was at the time a burgeoning scene of winemakers who were making wine that did. After working at various wineries, he was inspired by the dynamism and energy he saw in these young Cali winemakers and decided to go all in and he began to produce his own wines.In order to interpret what he thought California wines could be, he chose the great Chenin Blanc as his medium. This Loire valley expat has beautifully adapted to our state yet it is rarely used to produce the distinct and complex wines that Chenin is capable of. Most of the time it's left to ripen too long thus ruining Chernin's ability to balance richness with crunchy acidity. Having long been fascinated by this sleek and elegant variety he sought to do it justice.That was back in 2006 and while Chenin still remains a focus for Leo, he now crafts wines from many varieties from throughout the state. All Leo Steen wines are from hand-harvested grapes fermented with indigenous yeasts. All are bright and electric while being assiduously balanced. They all show the marks of pristine fruit handled by a masterful winemaker. Most of the wine ferments in stainless steel tanks, and then ages for 3-4 months in neutral barrels and depending on the cuvée, bottled before malolactic fermentation is complete. Very little sulfur if any is used.
Aromatic , Crisp , Fruity