Carneros, Napa Valley

Owner and CEO Denise McKahn started her career in the world of wine in 1992 when she worked in the export department at Wente Vineyards. There’s truth in the old adage that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree: Her son Charles decided at the tender age of 15 that he wanted to become a winemaker. Charles studied at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo and graduated in 2011 with a degree in enology. He was the first in the family to do so, but credits working harvests at McManis Family Vineyards in 2007 and Tolosa in 2009 and 2010 for his hands-on and practical knowledge. Charles moved to Napa Valley in 2011 and worked under Phillip Titus at Chappellet Vineyard on Pritchard Hill, working his way up from cellar intern to assistant winemaker over the span of five years.

Other family members working in the winery include his parents Denise and Kevin and his wife Brittany; Charles maintains the wine brand is “all about our family.” McKahn Family Cellars focuses on making high quality wines from Rhône varieties, with their McKahn Family Cellars Syrah leading the charge as their flagship. Charles feels that he and his family can bring Syrah “back to the front of the line in the fine wine world, next to the likes of Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir.” 

McKahn Family Cellars first vintage was in 2014 and to date they do not own any vineyards, choosing to source grapes from prominent vineyards around Northern California. In addition to the delicious Syrah recently sent to club members, McKahn Family Cellars produces Viognier, Grenache Blanc, Grenache, Petite Sirah, Carignane, Rosé of Grenache, and Cabernet Sauvignon.  Their wines are available in North Dakota and Rhode Island, but the majority is sold directly to consumers through the website Visitors to Napa Valley can also taste their wines at Mia Carta wine collective in downtown Napa. 

McKahn Family Cellars – 2020 Syrah

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