John Bernard Dawson’s wine epiphany happened on his 10th birthday, when his father poured him a small glass of J.J. Prum Trocken Beerenauslese 1971, John’s birth year. The color, texture, aromas, and flavors of that golden nectar were so magical that the experience left an indelible mark on John’s soul, and he has been chasing the glory of that first organoleptic breakthrough ever since.
During law school, John worked part-time at a wine retail shop in Manhattan. After practicing law in New York City for 7 years, John and his family moved to the Russian River Valley, where he joined the law firm of Carle Mackie Power & Ross LLP and began to focus his practice on representing wineries, winemakers, and alcohol beverage distributors. John was the founder and publisher of the newsletter “The Sonoma Wine Journal.” John continues to represent wineries, vineyards, winemakers, distributors and importers from around the world.
Beginning in September 2000, when John spent two weeks high up on Howell Mountain working for Bill and Joan Smith at La Jota Winery, John has worked harvest (in an unpaid capacity) for a number of wineries in the Russian River Valley, Sonoma Coast, and in Napa Valley, including many 18-hour days both in the cellar and in the vineyards. John has also spent considerable time walking through the vineyards of Bordeaux, Burgundy, Beaujolais, Piedmont, Friuli-Venezia, Oregon, Long Island, the Finger Lakes, and other winegrowing regions around the world. Through these experiences, John has come to the conclusion that most great wine is made in the vineyard, by family-owned and operated wineries.
The Sonoma Wine Journal
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