Robller Vineyard is located at the small river town of New Haven on the south side of the Missouri River
east of Hermann. We are the fourth owners of the property since the original deed that was acquired in
1821 by George Patton, an Englishman. This also corresponds with the year of Missouri’s Statehood. As
a year of many milestones including our 30th anniversary of opening the winery, a selection of
celebratory wines was in order.
From our initial plantings in the spring of 1988, we have maintained a dry farming model which has
forced the root systems to reach deep into the soil. The extreme drought of 2012 tested the vineyard
resulting in fruit with great complexity and structure. Since then, the fruit quality has increased year
over year creating amazing outcomes. Our vineyard is in the first river bluff range which has some of
the deepest soils in the region. Our soil depths range between 6 and 18 feet depending on the location.
Our vineyard blocks are planted on south-facing slopes with full east-west sun exposure. A unique
geologic feature for our vineyard is a Pennsylvanian era limestone formation on top of the typical
dolomitic limestone. This geologic difference contributes significantly to the profile of our fruit. Our
commitment to winegrowing leverages each vintage’s qualities in the cellar by adapting methods and
techniques to best express the fruit characteristics of a given harvest.
2018 Estate Reserve Vignoles (105 cases produced)
Our 2018 harvest marked 30 seasons of grape growing and the 27th year for our Vignoles. Our dry
farming allows for a small percentage of the Vignoles to raisin at harvest. After destemming, the fruit
was cold-soaked for 24 hours to capture some of the color and skin texture prior to pressing. The juice
was cold settled for 7 days allowing the solids to drop out of suspension. The racked juice was allowed
to warm naturally prior to yeast inoculation. A yeast strain from the Alsace region was selected to
accentuate the structure, aromatics and overall body. Cold fermentation lasted 35 days at which time
the wine was inoculated with malolactic culture. The MLF process lasted 4 months with sur lie aging
that continued for a total of 18 months. Monthly stirring was incorporated for the first 14 months
followed by 4 months settling the lees prior to racking. The finishing process included light bentonite
and gelatin fining prior to cold stabilization. Upon completion, the wine was bottled and allowed to rest
for 14 months prior to release.
2017 Estate Reserve Le Trompier Noir (160 cases produced)
Originally produced in 1993 as a field blend of Chambourcin, St. Vincent and Villard Noir this Pinot Noir
inspired red continues today. The majority of the block was interplanted with the three varieties in
1988. As the plants have matured over the years, the depth and complexity have continually increased.
Each year the harvest is destemmed followed by 5 days of cold soaking prior to the start of
fermentation. A yeast strain developed from the Cote de Nuits terroir is used for primary fermentation
along with ML co-inoculation. The selection helps elaborate the Pinot Noir qualities of the field blend.
Fermentation includes traditional punch downs and temperature management. Extended maceration of
45 days prior to gentle pressing allows for the completion of ML activity and the creation of softer
tannins. The settled wine is typically barreled in more neutral Missouri oak for 12 to 18 months.
The 2017 season finished with near-drought conditions, creating exceptional fruit with great structure
not seen since the 2012 harvest. Our traditional methods were followed with extended maceration of
50 days. The approach captured the robust characteristics of the vintage. The barrel aging regime was
dramatically extended to 36 months to refine the wine and showcase its depth and elegance.
2018 Land Grant Red (185 cases produced)
In 2018, knowing the Bicentennial was approaching, the creation of a new wine combining all that we
have learned, to fully express the vineyard and the vintage was in order. The wine started with
expanding our field blend concept to include all five reds growing in the vineyard. Challenged by the
spread of harvest dates, extending our cold-soaking regime and slowing the fermentation, allowed all of
the fruit to get in the tank together.
A yeast selection from the Priorat terroir was selected to articulate the tannin structure in the fruit while
expressing the full complement of fruit characters. From the first crush of fruit to completion of
fermentation and gentle pressing took 54 days. The extended maceration time created soft complex
tannins ready for barrel aging. The settled wine rested for 26 months in new Chinkapin Oak barrels.
The trees were harvested in Missouri and the staves were air-dried for 40 months prior to coopering
without kiln drying. Toast levels ranged from medium to heavy, integrating the fruit and creating
structure. What began as an idea in 2018, is now ready for release. We are proud to introduce Land
Grant Red in honor of those that came before us. Cheers to 200 years.
Our approach during the pandemic has been to leverage the outdoor space and serve clients through a
walk-up wine window. To create a safe and civil experience for enjoying wine, we have started this
season offering wine flights from the window. Our covered patio and pavilion afford patrons a well-
spaced seating environment to enjoy the picturesque view of the rolling hills while touring our wines in
a self-paced experience.
As a way to celebrate this year’s milestones, we have created a special reserve wine pairing flight in
collaboration with Cool Cow Cheese of Owensville. The pairing includes our new release of wines as
well as our 2017 Chambourcin Reserve. This wine was to be released during last year’s anniversary in
April, which was canceled due to the pandemic. Each of the wines has been carefully paired with cheese. As an extension of that thought, we worked with Tom Blatchford to create a celebration cheese.
The result is a full cream stain glass cheddar from his Jersey cow milk and our Land Grant Red wine.
We will continue to offer the reserve flight pairing and our standard flights throughout the year.