Avram Deixler is producing genuine, pure, natural wines in an old dairy barn that he’s named Absentee Winery in Point Reyes Station at the foot of Black Mountain in West Marin, California. Avi believes wine made with additives, including sulfites, is not wine. He’s proud of the fact that grapes are the only ingredients in his wines. He ferments with wild yeast ferments, without temperature control, and without additives. He also has learned the craft of barrel making. He ages all his wines in used barrels (François Frères) that he hand-shaves. In fact, he almost pursued barrel making instead of winemaking. Although he ferments and ages all his wine in barrels, the touch of oak in his wines is subtle.
Avi honed his craft working in the Loire with other young renegades like Francois St-Lo and Baptiste Cousin, as well as Baptiste’s OG dad, Olivier Cousin. His first vintage was 2016, from which he produced a total of just 400 cases (4,800 bottles). In order to set up his facility he spent $24,000 of his $50,000 budget on the application process of getting the approval of the Marin County Planning Commission for his one-man winery.
He’s getting his fruit from the Poor Ranch vineyard in Mendocino, 10- to 70-year-old Syrah, Carignan, and Petite Sirah, planted in clay soil, that’s head-pruned, dry-farmed and untreated. No chemicals are used in the vineyard and harvests are done by hand.