Dean Foote, the Bad Boy of winemakers
By Guy Doucet, president and founder of Alfred
While writing these lines, I am currently on my journey back from San Diego, where we spent a very productive week discussing with leaders of 160 credit union organizations present to discuss various challenges that are brought forward by the digitalization of relations in our modern society. We have fulfilled our goals of better understanding how we can help them strengthen customer loyalty for their business and to increase business development in the same way that we have been doing with our partner in Québec: Desjardins. We have many more partnerships and collaborations in store for 2019 on the North American continent for Alfred.
In the desert of California, 150 km in the north east of San Diego and at less than 100km from Palm Spring, lies a beautiful wine region named Temecula. Unknown to most in Quebec, this region produces excellent wines with strong character in a very warm environment. For this visit in this magnificent terroir, we were looking for the producer that had a unique story to tell; this story was unearthed in the smallest vineyard of the region, Foot & Path, a fully organic vineyard producing 400 crates of red wine yearly.
With his “cowboy” style, Deane, the winemaker, made us discover some of his products that were quite surprising because of their very high level of quality. Deane is a tall and a not very talkative man; he can “sell” his expertise and passion in less than twenty words. He operates, with the help of his wife and with no employees, a vineyard and farm since 2005, a propriety he bought in 1999. Everything is simple with Deane. The tasting room (that really isn’t one) is located in a small tent-like structure where a strange mix of casks and citrus fruit harvested on the farm are offered for sale to visitors.
We were simply charmed by a Merlot and a Mourvèdre of the 2011 vintage. Of a woody color evoking the Barolo region and with a strong and mature aroma of mushrooms, it is quite different from the “jammy” aspect that is quite characteristic of American Merlots and Zinfandels.
Before taking my leave, here are a few photos of this unique visit at the Foot & Path winery. I also brought back a few bottles of this 2011 vintage that will be put to the test with our expert sommeliers. I will keep you all informed on the availability of these wonderful products at Alfred in 2019!
Deane Foote, Owner and winemaker at Foot & Path, Temecula USA