Emmitt-Scorsone Wines is a partnership between winemakers Palmer Emmitt and Michael Scorsone. At our small artisan winery off the beaten path near Healdsburg, passion for making great wines is the singular motivating force.
We bottle wines under two labels – Judge Palmer and Domenica Amato – each expressing different interests of ours within the world of wine and honoring members of our respective families. Please come and spend some time with us on your next trip to wine country.
My grandfather James Palmer was a small town man who kept things simple. From his childhood picking peaches and pears in my great-grandfather’s orchards, to building his electrical contracting business Palmer Electric, to serving four terms as judge in the Placerville Justice Court, he lived his life by two simple credos – if you want something done right do it yourself, and don’t put up with any bullshit.
Our approach to winemaking echoes the lessons I learned from my grandfather Judge Palmer – simple, straightforward, and honest. My business partner Michael Scorsone and I learned winemaking the hard way, paying our dues with long hours of hard work in the cellar. We make the wines ourselves at our small artisan winery outside of Healdsburg, and launched and operate the business with no investors, no consultants, and no employees.
Judge Palmer is driven to produce the absolute highest quality Cabernet Sauvignon from the most prestigious vineyards in Napa Valley, as well as the undiscovered vineyard sites in Sonoma County that we feel are deserving of the same attention. The portfolio also includes the classic California white grapes Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, and other Bordeaux reds such as Cabernet Franc and Malbec.
We believe that the honesty and passion with which we make our wines will shine through and resonate – but you can be the judge of that. Try a bottle with a jury of your peers.
– Palmer Emmitt, Owner & Winemaker
The wines we make under the Domenica Amato label, named for my paternal grandmother, are sourced from small, family-owned vineyards and hand-made with passion and authenticity using old-world methods.
Growing up as the son of an Italian immigrant, food and wine were an important part of our family life. My father and uncles would make wine every year in our garage, and the extended family would regularly gather for Sunday dinners featuring my grandmother’s freshly baked bread.
Literally translated, my grandmother’s name means “Sunday love” – each bottle not only honors her memory but also expresses my passion for food and wine that was first stoked at those Sunday dinner tables and developed along my journey from culinary school to my winemaking career.
Domenica Amato focuses on the Rhône varieties Grenache and Grenache Blanc, as well as blends featuring those grapes, with additional offerings each year that may change based on the discovery of an exciting new vineyard source or the desire to experiment with different varieties, styles or blends. In the coming years, we intend to make Italian grape varieties a more significant part of the portfolio.
Crafted to be food-friendly and elegantly rustic, I hope you will enjoy our Domenica Amato wines with your loved ones around the Sunday dinner table.
– Michael Scorsone, Owner & Winemaker
We firmly believe that the best wines are grown not made – our inspiration for each wine begins in the vineyard. Several of our wines are estate-grown and we source additional fruit from growers that share our long-term commitment to quality and sustainable winegrowing. All of our wines across both labels are fermented spontaneously with wild yeast and though we don’t adhere strictly to any winemaking doctrine, we strive to make wines that are as natural as possible. For most of our wines the ingredient list would be simply grapes and sulfur, of which we use the minimum amount necessary for healthy fermentations and stable aging. Many of our wines are unfined and unfiltered. As part of our constant exploration of both old and new methods to make unique and distinctive wines, we ferment and/or age some of our wines in clay amphorae and concrete egg, and sometimes utilize varying degrees of skin contact in the production of white wines.