Established in 1996 by Tim and Mimi Spear, Clos Mimi is a "très petite" winery located in Santa Maria, California. Clos Mimi is French for "Mimi's enclosed vineyard" expressing Tim's timeless endearment to his children's mother, his wife, his business partner, his best friend and his soul mate. Inspired by the greatest "monocépage" wines of Burgundy, Côte Rotie and Hermitage, Clos Mimi is committed to vineyard designated, one hundred percent Syrah farmed by small family growers in Paso Robles and Santa Ynez. Tim is the "vigneron" for Clos Mimi. Thanks to his traditional convictions from a previous lifetime, Tim is "très religieux" in his pursuit of natural winegrowing. In 1988 Tim had the good fortune of interning alongside a young Jean-Louis Chave in California. Three years later while spending an entire day hiking the steep vineyards of Hermitage in Jean-Louis' royal company and tasting the unblended and highly spiritual 1990 Chave Hermitage from "barrique," Tim was smitten by Syrah. Between the "Exposition Universelle" may 1855 in Paris and the first performance of Giacomo Puccini's "La Bohème's" 1 february 1896 in Turin, Mimi and Tim fell in love once upon a time.
The label for Clos Mimi symbolizes everlasting love and commitment. The mark itself intimates a spiritual connection with Burgundy. The "fleur de lys" heralds the Spear Family Coat of Arms described as "argent, a thistle with three heads, stalked and leaved vert, flowered gules." The thistle is the symbol of a noble but humble heart whose honor will be defended with the sword. The color argent (white or silver) denotes peace and sincerity. The color black was borrowed from Coco Chanel (not medieval England) known for her timeless design. According to Chinese "feng shui" the color black represents career and water. The color black is believed to be powerful, thus absorbing other colors. In fact, Pierre-Auguste Renoir called black "the Queen of colors" once upon a time in Paris.
Clos Mimi launched its "petite rousse" brand in 2001. Despite its very French and very understated front label, Clos Mimi "petite rousse" is made from 100% Syrah. Influenced by the greatest appellations in France, Clos Mimi "petite rousse" proudly states "appellation paso robles" on the front label. Thanks to Tim's 12-month apprenticeship at Château Lynch-Bages and visiting 34 châteaux in Bordeaux in 1991, the benchmark for "petite rousse" is Château Margaux's timeless second label, "Pavillon Rouge." Tim dedicates Clos Mimi's pink label to a little red-headed girl from Montmartre named Margot Legrand. Blessed with curly auburn hair, pearly skin, plump cheeks, rosy lips and a mischievous smile, Margot enchanted the canvas of Renoir till her heart-rending death in 1879.
"Thank goodness the wine world has producers such as Clos Mimi and its 'push the envelope' winemaker/owner, Tim Spear..."
"These offerings reveal Tim Spear's classic pedal-to-the-metal, full-throttle style with great individuality, loads of character, and plenty of complexity..."
"These are all unique, individualistic offerings from a revolutionary winemaker marching to the beat of his own drum. Let's hope he never changes."