Utah Bites

Stolpman Vineyards L’Avion

The 2020 L’Avion wine is a gorgeous, well-structured white wine, zesty with tropical fruit notes of pineapple, kiwi and mango.


During a recent dinner at Log Haven restaurant, my wife and I enjoyed a beautiful bottle of wine recommended by General Manager Ian Campbell, which Log Haven has on its “Limited Availability” wine list. It’s from California’s Stolpman Vineyards and it’s called simply L’Avion. 

First though, a word about the very special vineyards founded by Tom Stolpman more than 20 years ago. According to the winemakers, “Hidden in the hills of California’s Central Coast, on a rare Limestone outcropping and unobstructed from the Pacific Ocean wind, this unique land is naturally suited to grow Syrah and Roussanne grapes. We are committed to preserving this natural environment for our vines through conscious farming, dry farming, & sustainable employment. In the winery, we prefer native fermentation & minimal manipulation. Dedicated to sensible farming & winemaking, we believe that we can create vibrant, site-specific wines, with a focus unique to Ballard Canyon AVA, California.”

I really love Roussanne-based wines, but there aren’t a lot of them produced here domestically. So I was thrilled to see Roussanne on the Log Haven wine list. The winemakers at Stolpman Vineyards are very eloquent in describing the conditions and variables that allow them to grow world-class Roussanne. 

“We feel we have a singular opportunity to make opulent, intriguing Roussanne.  Our southern location near 34 degrees latitude gives the Roussanne grapes intense solar radiation to tan the fruit their namesake ‘Rousse’ or Rust color.  Limestone soils and pacific-influenced cold nights combine to maintain acidity late in the year.  Low humidity and high winds keep the grapes clear of mold and for better or worse, we never get significant rainfall through harvest.  We can ‘wait out’ the late-ripening grape until it is perfectly golden and concentrated.”

Golden and concentrated is precisely how I would define the 2020 L’Avion wine we enjoyed at Log Haven. It’s an elegant but zesty wine with tropical fruit notes of pineapple, kiwi and mango – a gorgeous, well-structured white wine that will just get better with age. It’s not a stretch to call L’Avion voluptuous.  



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Food writer Ted Scheffler

Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers. 


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