Prince Michel Vineyards

Now well into its third decade of winemaking, Prince Michel Vineyards has a proud history and a bright future.

Founded in 1980 by French industrialist Jean Leducq, Prince Michel pioneered using old world winemaking techniques and styles with new world fruit.  The combination was a success and the winery grew.

Today, Prince Michel Vineyards CEO and Owner Kristen Holtzman Swanson is one of just a handful of female winery owners in the world.  Her touches can be seen throughout the winery she acquired in 2005.  It is generally agreed that her entrepreneurial spirit and vibrancy helped spark a rebirth of the Prince Michel and Rapidan River wine labels.

Working with Virginia wine veterans such as winemaker Brad Hansen and Sales Manager Dan Layman, Holtzman built on the proud traditions of the 80’s and 90’s while bringing in fun new ideas – like the Rapidan fruit wines – to keep the winery pushing the envelope on both quality and innovation.

Tasting the Prince Michel Vineyards portfolio is much like a holiday trip home.  Many of the wines you knew in their youth today seem wiser and more important; other wines are not so familiar but seem nice in a “happy to meet you” kind of way.

Prince Michel Vineyards under the tutelage of Holtzman-Swanson, and her team, is embracing their proud history without being hindered by it.  One could hope for nothing better.


About virginiawineclub

Chairman Virginia Wine Club Tasting Panel Editor, Virginia Wine Journal
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