The Pursuit of Excellence with Simon Faury & Philippe Melka
We are extremely pleased to have Simon Faury join our team as Winemaker. A native of France, Simon brings extensive experience and knowledge to his new role with Crown Point. After first pursuing a winemaking career at the age of 17, Simon earned his Master’s Degree in Viticulture and Enology from the University of Bordeaux and has since worked in some of the most prestigious wine regions in the world, such as Barbaresco, Barolo, Bordeaux, Mendoza and Napa Valley. His Napa Valley resume includes such esteemed names as Robert Mondavi, The Napa Valley Reserve and Harlan. Most recently, Simon worked at Napa’s iconic Merryvale as Head Winemaker.
Simon first heard about Crown Point Vineyards through our own Philippe Melka, who, after joining our team in 2017, shared his excitement about Crown Point with Simon. The two first worked together while Philippe was consulting with Merryvale and over the years, have built a strong rapport in and out of the cellar, deliberating over everything from wine to surfing to life in France. Needless to say, Philippe was thrilled by the news of Simon joining our team at Crown Point.
Simon brings a very analytical approach to winemaking, having trained in Bordeaux then later by Craig Williams of Joseph Phelps Vineyards, yet he recognizes the importance of balance in his craft – which is where Philippe comes in. Though driven by his scientific background, Simon is also able to embrace a creative side in winemaking, which is where he and Philippe – who takes a more imaginative approach – find the perfect harmony in winemaking. This balance of artistry with a more methodical technique allows Philippe and Simon to challenge and learn from each other in their pursuit of crafting extraordinary wines from our special site.
Simon brings depth of experience and a work ethic that matches Crown Point’s dedication to quality, and we couldn’t be more confident in our winemaking team’s ability to craft extraordinary wines from our special property.”
—Philippe Melka, Wine Consultant
Crown Point is Simon’s first venture in Santa Barbara County, and he is particularly excited to work here in the Happy Canyon region where Bordeaux varieties are thriving. He was immediately drawn to Crown Point’s unique estate for its diversity in soils, climatic conditions and topography – fundamental elements in producing complex, elegant wines with a true sense of place.
It’s due to Crown Point’s unique location and mineral-laden, rocky soils that we’re able to produce wines that are powerful, yet still have soft, balanced tannins. Our long growing season, which sees plenty of daytime sunshine and cooler evening temperatures, allows us to impeccably ripen the fruit to optimal flavor intensity. This slow and steady pace, coupled with the discretion and skill of our winemaking team, is how we obtain the perfect integration of tannin, texture and flavor. And according to Simon, Bordeaux varietals are all about the textural experience.
With all this being said, what excites Simon most about joining Crown Point is to be a pioneer in this region. No other producer has been solely dedicated to crafting quality Bordeaux varietals in Santa Barbara County, and he and the team are eager to establish this region as one renowned for its world-class Bordeaux wines. The possibilities are endless, and we look forward to continuing our quest of crafting the highest caliber Happy Canyon wines that are distinctly their own.