The erudite Bill Arbios, longtime winemaker and consultant for Jarvis, Lyeth, Fieldstone, and Souverain wineries among others is the artist and scientist behind Praxis. Praxis, the Greek word for practice, is hardly something Bill Arbios lacks; he has made wine for more than three decades, but Bill is a modest fellow with a lot of talent who likes to get things right. Bill and his patient wife Susan launched Praxis several years ago as an outgrowth of their Arbios Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, which first debuted in 1993 with a mere 125 cases. Today, the entire production of Arbios Cellars remains at a modest 3000 cases – more than ample testimony to Bill’s insistence that “winemaking is not like being in a factory – it’s creating a work of art … winemaking defines the essence of my life; transforming a challenge into a vision of elegance, grace and power.”
Praxis wines are all 100% varietal offerings. In fact, most of this property’s wines are even produced from a single vineyard. Bill Arbios believes in allowing the nature of the grape variety and the natural terroir to express themselves in his wines. Consequently, he eschews blending as well as excessive manipulation. Bill’s philosophy is simple and can be summed up in the words of Bill’s early mentor, Lee Stewart: “buy the best grapes you can, spend more money than you can afford on the barrels, and don’t screw it up.” Essentially, this is the secret to great wines. Unfortunately, many winemakers miss the simple logic here and continue to manipulate their wines until they lack focus and are nearly unrecognizable. From Praxis, you can count on receiving only real wines that reflect individual grape varieties and their respective terroirs.
Presently, the Praxis line of wines include a very tangy quaffable Sauvignon Blanc, a classic delicious, perfectly balanced Viognier, a lovely Burgundian style Pinot Noir that puts many of its French cousins from Burgundy to shame, a spicy Syrah, and a powerful full throttle Merlot.