Anne and Michael were introduced in 1994, and quickly fell in love. Sharing a wealth of personal and professional interests, the couple spoke early in their relationship about the exciting prospect of founding a winery together. With complementary degrees in enology from the University of Bordeaux, and the University of California at Davis, they knew that their combined backgrounds could result in something special. In 1996, Michael and Anne were married. That same year, they founded Dashe Cellars together. For the wine label, they chose a playful image featuring a monkey riding on the back of a fish, a metaphor for two unique creatures traveling together on a journey.To make their inaugural vintage of 1996 Dry Creek Zinfandel, the Dashe's custom crushed at a friend's winery in Sonoma, while Michael simultaneously worked as assistant winemaker at Ridge. Unveiled at a gathering of the Zinfandel Advocates and Producers ( ZAP ), Michael and Anne were thrilled when their Dry Creek Zinfandel was glowingly received. By 1998, Michael had left Ridge to pursue winemaking at Dashe Cellars fulltime. Soon after, the Dashe's moved to a 4000 square foot winery facility in Alameda, next-door to Rosenblum Cellars, and Jeff Cohn's JC Cellars.Building on relationships established by Michael during his years with Ridge, the Dashes began selecting a portfolio of respected vineyard partners. Their goal was simple: to create wines that captured the unique soil, climate and regional characteristics of world-class vineyards. Focusing on older vines, steep hillside locations, rocky soils and stressful growing conditions, Dashe Cellars works closely with their growers to ensure careful vineyard management and low yields. With specific blocks set aside under long-term contract, Michael and Anne make harvesting decisions for every vineyard property.Known for its exceptional single vineyard zinfandels, Dashe Cellars also produces excellent cabernet sauvignon and merlot. As head winemaker, Michael applies traditional techniques including small lot fermentation, the use of indigenous yeasts, and little or no fining or filtration. In addition, Dashe Cellars utilizes 12 distinct small family coopers, with an emphasis on older French oak for its barrel program. During blending, Michael and Anne work side-by-side, sharing their experience and insights to achieve Dashe Cellars' sophisticated and engaging synthesis of French and American winemaking.