Tim Goodwin, General Manager; Jesus Espinoza, partner; Julien Fayard, winemaker; and Cruz Calderon, partner

About Scalon Cellars

As a young man Jesus Espinoza worked in Napa planting grape vines as a laborer. Over 20 years later, destiny has taken him back to the same ranch, but this time as the owner of the grapes. In 2005, partner Cruz Calderon started construction of the wine cave at the prestigious Caldwell Vineyard in the Coombsville District of Napa where Jesus is Vineyard Manager.

It is here that they forged their friendship and it is here, within the cave that Cruz constructed, and using the fruit from the vines Jesus planted, that Scalon Cellars was born. The wine is now made at Julien’s cellar, Fayard Winemaking.

Our Winemaker, Julien Fayard

Back in 2014 we were looking for the right winemaker for Scalon. Jesus suggested we talk to a guy named Julien Fayard, who had been working with Philippe Melka and was making wine at Caldwell, where Jesus had met him and worked with him. With that reputation, we thought he had probably made some high-scoring red wines. We were also interested in whites though, so we suggested that Jesus bring in some of Julien’s Rosé and Sauvignon Blanc for us to try. Jesus laughed and told us to look for Julien’s Azur Wines online, which specializes in Rosé. End of story. He knows how to make Rosé wines!

Scalon Cellars: the Vineyards

When Jesus came to the US from his home in Mexico over 30 years ago, his first job was to plant a vineyard up on the hills of Napa Valley’s Coombsville district, right next to Caldwell Vineyard. As he worked with the vines, he saw how the extreme lack of topsoil, mostly volcanic in origin, forced the vines to self-regulate their vigor, resulting in fruit with maximum flavor, tannins, and site expression.

Years later, he has returned to this little vineyard next to Caldwell, and is now the owner of the vines. His thirty years of farming, serving as Vineyard Manager for John Caldwell, has taught him to recognize excellent vineyard conditions and be vigilant about maintaining the balance between the amount of leaf and grape clusters. This gives Julien his ideal profile of fruit and is a signature of our Scalon style.