We ship to: AK, HI, ID, MT, OR, WA, AZ, CA, CO, ND, NV, SD, WY, AL, AR, IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, NM, TX, CN, FL, GA, IL, KY, LA, MA, MD, MN, MI, NC, NH, NY, OH, PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, DC, WI
FEL Wines produces Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris from the Anderson Valley and the Sonoma Coast. Meticulously crafted by Winemaker Ryan Hodgins, FEL also features a unique portfolio of vineyard designate wines, including both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from our estate Savoy Vineyard. The letters in FEL represent Florence Elsie Lede, founder Cliff Lede’s mother, a home winemaker who provided the early inspiration for Cliff’s love of wine.
Growing up in Alberta, Canada, Cliff remembers the tulip as signifying the end of winter, bringing with it a freshness and excitement of warmer days ahead. The FEL Wines label, featuring an illustration of an opening tulip, is a tribute to Florence’s passion for gardening.
Cliff Lede, Owner: Since founding his namesake winery in 2002, Cliff Lede (pronounced lay-dee) has put every emphasis towards creating a modern and diversified world-class estate. A strategic thinker and visionary, Lede is the driving force of a company that at once holds the values of the great Old World winemaking properties, with the energy, youth and spark of the New World. His wines are intrinsically connected to the land, yet his view point is forward-thinking and entirely fresh.
Ryan Hodkins, Winemaker: Raised in the Pacific Northwest, Ryan Hodgins attended Oberlin College in Ohio, where he often had conversations with his plant biology professor about winegrowing. Though he explored a few careers upon graduation, his interest in wine was piqued, and he soon relocated to California and enrolled in the master’s program at U.C. Davis and graduated with a degree in Viticulture & Enology.
Our flagship wines come from Savoy Vineyard in the Anderson Valley. Originally planted by Richard Savoy in 1991, the cool climate vineyard has built a reputation for outstanding Pinot Noir and Chardonnay ever since. Cliff Lede purchased the vineyard in 2011 and so began FEL Wines as a leading producer of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
Savoy Vineyard’s 44 acres is made up of 34 sub-blocks, each managed individually to maximize quality. While producing our own wines from the vineyard, we sell fruit from Savoy to many of the respected wineries that helped build the vineyard’s reputation, including Littorai, Radio Coteau, Auteur, Failla, and Peay. FEL’s Savoy Pinot Noir consistently offers the elusive combination of concentration and elegance.
Richard Savoy first purchased a homestead high above Boonville in 1984 and his passion for Pinot Noir inspired him to see the possibilities of this remote place. The cool nights and warm summer days around the Philo area intrigued him, and, seeking a larger vineyard site in the area, he knew he had struck gold when he discovered a gently sloping southwest-facing pasture near the junction of Gowan Creek and the Navarro River. The ground was prepared, drainage installed, and a pond built. The first vines of Savoy Vineyard were planted in 1991, with additional acreage added every few years throughout the 1990s.
FEL’s vineyard philosophy is built upon a commitment to enhancing and protecting the valuable land and water with which we grow our wine grapes. FEL wines are an exuberant expression of our Anderson Valley vineyards and reflect the natural harmony and balance we encourage through the following practices.
COMPOST and ORGANIC FERTILIZER is preferred for natural and sustained vineyard nutrition
COVER CROPPING for erosion control and soil fertility
CONVERSION TO NO TILLAGE where possible between vine rows to minimize erosion
MECHANICAL WEED CONTROL reduces or eliminates the use of herbicide
NATURAL HABITAT for wildlife on unplanted land on over 20% of Savoy Vineyard
RIPARIAN HABITAT at Savoy Vineyard for wildlife corridors and aquatic habitat
NATIVE PLANT INSECTARIES attract beneficial insects to assist in pest management
WEATHER STATION allows for more efficient irrigation and disease prevention based on risk
DEFICIT IRRIGATION minimizes water use and produces small concentrated grapes
INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT by creating habitat for and releasing beneficial insects; using canopy management practices to reduce disease pressure; applying organic products for disease control; assessing risk; and monitoring the vineyard before applying pest control measures.