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The narrative of the Rudd story is driven by the value Leslie places on tradition and family, values reflected by his desire to create a multigenerational winery with a legacy of excellence. As a young man working for his father’s wholesale liquor company in Wichita, Kansas, Leslie learned the alcoholic spirit business from the ground up. His dream of owning a winery took root on a trip to France in the mid 60’s when Leslie visited the legendary Haut-Brion in Bordeaux. Leslie was impressed by the Chateau’s deep appreciation not only of its heritage but also the central role played by multiple generations of family. Profoundly impacted by this experience, Leslie was determined to someday create a vineyard and winery with this same dedication and sense of place and establish the same legacy for his family.


In 1996 the fulfillment of the dream began when he purchased the 55-acre Oakville estate after concluding the site was capable of producing unique luxury wines of world class quality. The 2000 vintage was the first Rudd Oakville Estate Red bottled, and in the more than a decade since then, we have limited production in order to pursue the tradition of excellence and attention to detail, while always adhering to our philosophy of continuous improvement.

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Our soil’s optimal mineral content and other geological characteristics along with our western facing exposure give us the opportunity to grow Bordeaux varietals in order to produce world-class red wine. We have planted all five of the major Bordeaux varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Malbec, and Petit Verdot. But the land’s potential can only be achieved if at every decision point we make the choice to maximize quality.


Our vineyard manager, David Abreu, works with winemaker, Frederick Ammons, to make sure everything we do in the vineyards maximizes the potential quality of the wine we will produce. This included dropping over half the fruit before maturity, selectively picking small sections of the vineyards to insure ideal ripeness, and fermenting varietals individually until ready to be blended. This meticulous attention to detail and consistent focus on quality has allowed us to create wines that we are very proud of and we will continue to try to improve upon.

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Our overarching winemaking philosophy is to allow our unique vineyard sites to express their full potential by combining meticulous, balanced farming with classical winemaking techniques enhanced by innovative practices. As Leslie puts it, “It all starts in the vineyards”, and thus our emphasis is on the vineyards. We strive to achieve an ideal balance in our vineyards with our farming practices to maximize quality at the expense of quantity in order to create the most complex and nuanced flavored fruit.


Upon harvest, fruit is handled delicately at each step of the process including the use of 40 pound harvest boxes, storage in refrigerated containers, sorting grapes by hand, and analyzing individual lots during elevage. We only blend the lots that our winemaker feels will make the very best wine and declassify the remaining lots, which is typically up to half of total production. When we finally bottle the wine, we are confident it is the best possible wine that we are capable of producing.

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Inside information

Immediately after purchasing the winery in 1996, Leslie began expanding and enhancing the winery’s caves to a capacity today of 20,000 square feet. The 78,000 tons of stone and bedrock removed during construction were reused to build the stone walls surrounding the property. Recent improvements allow the cellar team to have complete temperature and humidity control over different sections of the caves to give flexibility in treating each varietal uniquely and also aid in barrel fermentation when appropriate. The caves also house the Rudd Wine Library that contains past vintages of all the Rudd wines along with Leslie’s personal wine collection.

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  • Wilfred Peterson

    Walk with dreamers, the believers, the courageous, the cheerful, the planners, the doers, the successful people with their heads in the clouds and their feet on the ground. Let their spirit ignite a fire within you and leave this world better than when you found it.


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Wine Moments

Here you can see wine moments from tastingbook users.    or    to see wine moments from your world.

 Jeb Dunnuck, Wine Writer (United States)  tasted  2 wines  from  Rudd Winery . In a tasting of  18 wines 

Dominus 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon checks in as 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot brought up in 40% new French oak. With an essence of Cabernet-like character in its darker currants, green tobacco, cedar, graphite, and floral aromas and flavors, this gorgeous wine is full-bodied and has bright yet integrated acidity, polished tannins, and a great, great finish. It’s just gorgeously put together and a magical, flawless wine. It's going to take a decade to hit maturity but will evolve for 40-50 years in cold cellars. It is as good as it gets in classic, age-worthy Cabernet Sauvignon!

14d 12h ago

 Juha Lihtonen / The Best Scandinavian Sommelier 2003, Pro (Finland)  tasted  1 wines  from  Rudd Winery . In a tasting of  15 wines 

“This was a vintage that yielded wines with great layers and nuances thanks to prolonged harvest period. The fruit material was very ripe, but showed as well a lot of freshness and lively acidity. For me it is reminiscent of the 2005 but with a greater degree of concentration. –Cory Empting, Winemaker of Harlan and BOND Estate”

7y 10m ago

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