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Benovia Winery

Russian River Valley AVA

A lifelong passion for wine created a celebrated, award-winning boutique winery

With a prime location in Sonoma County’s lush Russian River Valley, the decade-old Benovia Winery has quickly become one of the darlings of the Northern California wine community.

Benovia Winery first saw the light of day in 2005 with the release of a tiny (around 400) number of cases. The winery has grown steadily and will produce some 6,000 cases this current year. Co-owned by Joe Anderson, his wife Mary Dewane, and winemaker Mike Sullivan, Benovia Winery considers itself a family of people who eat, drink and breathe a passion for making special wines. The word ‘fun’ is an integral part of Benovia Winery’s character and the team behind the brand challenges each other to make extraordinary wines on a daily basis.

Prior to starting Benovia Winery, Joe Anderson and Mary Dewane each held successful careers in the health care industry. Their entrepreneurial experience has made them the perfect winery owners because they know exactly what a business needs to grow and thrive and they have invested in all the right things to make Benovia Winery successful - vineyards planted in a state of the art way, top notch winery equipment, and great people who together make an even better team.

The name Benovia evolved from Mary and Joe’s fathers’ first names (Ben Dewane and Novian Anderson). The winery is a tribute to their fathers, who encouraged them that ‘hard work brings its own rewards,’ and to ‘never, ever produce anything that wouldn’t make you proud.’

The key to Benovia Winery’s future lies in the exceptional vineyards that comprise the winery’s estate plantings. Currently, Benovia sources fruit from their estate vineyards in Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, and Sonoma Coast, with grower partners in Sonoma Mountain and Ft. Ross- Seaview. While the labels may vary with each spring and fall release, Benovia’s unwavering commitment is to produce the highest quality Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel at every price point.

Public reaction to Benovia Winery’s selections has been nothing short of exceptional. High scores and a plethora of individual awards have benefited the winery’s rise to the upper echelons of Sonoma County wineries. Benovia Winery feels very fortunate to have achieved its great success while maintaining its wonderful family feeling throughout its ownership and operations. It is a credit to Sonoma County and will remain at the highest level for many years to come. Cheers!

Map of the area

Mike Sullivan - Winemaker

Picture of Mike Sullivan - Winemaker

Mike Sullivan is wine country through and through. Growing up in the Russian River Valley, Mike became passionate about wine at an early age and went on to earn his degree in fermentation science at Fresno State. He has since been crafting exceptional wines on the Sonoma Coast, earning such reputable titles as “Winemaker of the Year” from Ronn Wiegand (MS and MW) and “Wine Personality of the Year” from Robert Parker, in addition to the multitude of awards and medals his wines have also garnered.

As a winemaker, Mike Sullivan listens to the vineyards, to what the grapes are saying, and to the wine during fermentation - he does not follow a standard recipe for each wine, but rather listens and understands what is needed to bring everything together.

Dear Platinum Wine Club Members,

Picture of Dear <i>Platinum Wine Club</i> Members,

Benovia embraces a winemaking philosophy that believes exceptional vineyard sites produce wines with remarkable personality and extraordinary character. Our wish is to showcase the uniqueness of our estate vineyards and explore the diverse expression of Chardonnay throughout the Russian River and Sonoma Coast.

Our Winery was founded in 2005 by Joe Anderson and Mary Dewane, and winemaker Mike Sullivan. Benovia Winery farms 71.7 acres of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel from estate vineyards in the Russian River Valley and its surrounding wine growing area.

Our Ft. Ross-Seaview Chardonnay is sourced from one vineyard on the third coastal ridge from the ocean, near the town of Seaview. The low-fertility soils and the cool temperature near the Pacific Ocean produce a distinctive Chardonnay. This bottling comes from two blocks within the vineyard, both planted to Chardonnay clone Dijon 76, 95, and 96. Harvested in the early morning, the fruit was rigorously hand sorted prior to whole cluster pressing and barrel fermentation with indigenous yeasts.

The 2013 vintage is very seductive, it displays explosive aromas of lime blossom, William Pear, and underlying mineral notes. On the palate, the wine displays tension between bright acidity and cool-climate structure framed with flavors of nectarine and lemon custard.


Mike Sullivan
Benovia Winemaker and Co-Owner