Meet Domenica Totty, the winemaker who crafts the
Folie a Deux collection.
Taking the reins at Folie à Deux was a homecoming of sorts for winemaker Domenica Totty. The Sonoma County native grew up in the eclectic, agricultural town of Sebastol, where the apple orchards were slowly replanted to vineyards throughout her childhood. A natural aptitude for science and a passion for creativity led her toward a career in winemaking.
“I’ve always loved the way winemaking is rooted in science, yet there’s an art to all of the scientifically-based decisions we make along the way. How we guide and shape a wine—that’s where the creative expression comes in,” said Domenica.
After earning her degree in fermentation science from the University of California at Davis and spending a harvest at Gloria Ferrer in Sonoma, Domenica joined the winemaking team at Beaulieu Vineyard in Napa Valley, where she remained for nearly 20 years. In the early days of her career, walking through the rows of vines on her own for the first time gave Domenica a deep sense of how a great wine is made—in the vineyard. The gentle pull of her agricultural roots—Domenica’s great-grandparents emigrated from Italy and planted a vegetable farm in Santa Rosa—began to come alive.
For two decades, her various roles at BV gave Domenica a profound understanding of the vineyards, which in turn fueled her drive to express a sense of place in her wines. The opportunity to return to her roots and work with Sonoma County fruit made Folie à Deux the ideal fit for Domenica. The diversity of Sonoma County’s appellations allows her to discover the nuances of each region and then showcase those site-specific characteristics in the glass.
“As I walk through the vineyards and taste the grapes, a certain flavor may stand out to me and I start to envision how I want the wine to take shape, how I want to convey that particular flavor,” said Domenica. “I would love for someone who eventually tastes that wine to really get a sense of the place, to get a glimpse of what it’s like to walk the vineyard rows during harvest.”
Domenica crafts the Folie à Deux collection with an eye toward capturing each varietal in its truest form and translating the unmatched terroir of Sonoma County’s unique appellations.
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