Making Wine in Napa and France With Denise Adams of ADAMVS: Season 2, Episode 17 of 'Let's Go Together'

It all started with a few healthy worms.

Portrait of Denis Adams with a glass and bottle of wine
Photo: Kim Carroll

Borders are re-opening, flights are getting booked, and people the world over are slowly but surely gaining access to the Covid-19 vaccine. All that equals out to this: Travel is finally making a comeback.

We're celebrating the return of reunions, adventures, romantic journeys, and solo getaways with new episodes of our podcast, Let's Go Together, which highlights how travel changes the way we see ourselves and the world.

In the first season, our pilot and adventurer host, Kellee Edwards, introduced listeners to diverse globe-trotters who showed us that travelers come in all shapes and sizes and from all walks of life. From the first Black woman to travel to every country on Earth to a man who trekked to Machu Picchu in a wheelchair, we met some incredible folks. And now, in our second season, we are back to introduce you to new people, new places, and new perspectives.

In our latest episode, guest host Nina Ruggiero sits down with winemaker Denise Adams, co-owner of ADAMVS in Napa, California and Château Fonplégade in Saint-Émilion, France, to talk about the joys and challenges of making wine in two of the most well-known winemaking regions in the world.

"I've always said at ADAMVS, if someone's going to take the time to drive all the way up the mountain, on Howell Mountain, and spend time with us, we want it to be worth their while," Adams shared. "And so, we love being teachers and educators, if you will, and we love spending the time, taking every guest through the vineyard, and answering questions and talking about anything, from our pruning process to irrigation. We want them to taste the grapes in the vineyard, and truly understand what goes into making fine wine."

As for what goes into the wine, well, it's a whole lot of love, attention, and decades of knowledge gathered by Adams herself. As she explained, from the age of five she spent time in her grandparent's vegetable garden, before purchasing her own home and converting the entire property to an organic farm — worm boxes and all. Through this process, she learned exactly what it takes to make a wine that is not only delicious but a varietal that is good for the environment as well.

"We're passionate about our farming and winemaking methods. We're certified organic and biodynamic on both properties," she said. "And for me, this is the highest level of farming one can achieve, and it all begins in the vineyard."

Want to learn more about his methods and his wines? Hear more from Adams on Let's Go Together, available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Player.FM, and everywhere podcasts are available.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles