Clay Mauritson is a sixth generation grape grower. Notice we didn’t say winemaker, because it wasn’t until 1998 that the family produced its first bottle of Dry Creek Zinfandel under the Mauritson label. Prior to this date the family devoted their 270 acres to growing grapes that would be made into wine by other winemakers.
Today the family produces some amazing wine that is super affordable and we had a chance to sample the juice last night at a special wine dinner at Culpepper Steak House in Rockwall, which has this amazing affinity for bringing fantastic winemakers into their restaurant with uncanny abilities of chef Chad Bowden who has developed these special relationships with these vineyards.
We have attended a few of these wine dinners in the past and love the special interaction between Bowden and the winemakers. Often these makers are young and have this refreshing take on making wine. This is certainly the case with Mauritson who stared out working for Kenwood Vineyards in the marketing department and eventually convinced his family that they should be making wine instead of selling grapes.
This move proved fortuitous as just months after making this pitch to his family there was a drastic shift in their grape business due to corporate winemakers buying out many of the small wineries that had contracts with Mauritson. Years later Mauritson is a leading winemaker with an incredible portfolio.
Check out how chef Bowden and Mauritson interacted last evening. Also, watch out for more wine dinners planned for the coming months. We will be sure to keep our readers posted.
Herb Crusted Painted Hills Beef Carpaccio with Texas blueberry oil, Arugula and aged gorgonzola
2007 Rockpile Petite Syrah
Post Oak Smoked Chipotle Rubbed St Louis Ribs with Sonoma cabbage salad and housemade BBQ
2009 Mauritson Zinfandel
Dry Aged Painted Hills NY Strip with charred ramps, wild muschrooms, and black Mission fig demi
2007 Rockpile Buck’s Pasture
Espresso Pound Cake Terrine made with milk chocolate and tangelo white chocolate ganache layers, candied orange peel and pistachio dust
2009 Rockpile Independance