Mike and I have loved wine for a long time now, and have made wine for several vintages. We began with one of those “make wine with us” type places. We didn’t know where the grapes were from, other than Lodi, California. We graduated to a more serious operation with Crush Pad in San Francisco. We had rave reviews from our friends and colleagues that had tried our wine. We have dreamed of retiring to California and have purchased property in Arroyo Grande to fulfill this dream. Now onto the “what are we going to do when we get there” aspect of our lives.
So enter Dracaena wines. Yes, it is a little strange name but there is a story behind it. (of course) Dracaena [druh-see-nuh] is the genus name of the plant better known as the Draco plant. The taxonomy name allowed us to combine our scientific backgrounds while honoring the memory of our adored weimaraner, Draco in our winemaking endeavor.
Our weimie, Draco, received his name in honor of Draco, the Dragon which is a constellation in the northern hemisphere. We were sitting in a movie theatre watching Dragonheart, a 1996 American fantasy adventure film directed by Rob Cohen. It starred Dennis Quaid as Bowen, a dragon-hunter, and the voice of Sean Connery as the dragon. During the movie, Quaid and Connery form a partnership to defraud local villagers with staged dragon-slayings. Being friends, Bowen wanted to give the dragon a name and decides to call the dragon Draco, as a tribute to the constellation of stars. We heard the name and both knew this was going to be his name.
When our beloved Draco passed away on May 12, 2011 after 14 years of making our lives wonderful, we needed to find a way to help us with our grief and keep his memory alive in our home. Our solution was to purchase a Draco Tree and keep it in the place where Draco ate. Every time we look at the plant, his memory carries on. When we decided to begin our venture into winemaking our maid of honor, and my best friend, Sonja Gerard hand drew the label and placed Draco in the middle of a vineyard. Deciding on the winery name required a different kind of creativity. We wanted to keep Draco as the namesake but additionally wanted to merge our personalities into the name. Considering we both have scientific backgrounds, Lori with a B.A. and M.S. in Biology and Michael with a B.S. and M.S. in Food Science, it made sense to us to have a scientific name as our winery name and Dracaena allowed for this amalgamation. We fell in love with the name; hopefully you will fall in love with the wine!