“Hey, Niemeyer’s! You barbecuing?” A neighbor calls to us as he walks by. Sheri, communications director, wife, and mother of the majority of the Sundae Wines production team, explains to us that their family BBQ’s are infamous. They gather at least twice a week to share food and wine. Sheri never cooks for less than 40.
While speaking to the Niemeyers, Boulder natives and owners of Sundae Wines, it was clear that their entire operation is rooted in family and community. They invited us into their home and what was intended to be a 15-minute photo shoot, turned into 2 hours of conversation, wine tastings and a peek into the world of the family at the heart of Sundae Wines.
So where did it all start? What drives a Boulder business guy (Rob Niemeyer, CEO, and founder) to open a world-class wine company? Rob and a friend, upon graduating from business school, could not continue into the business world lacking critical knowledge of fine wine. Together, they bought a case of wines ranging from cheap to not-so-cheap and began to take notes. For Rob, the note-taking never stopped. He has since traveled the world in search of the finest wine.
Sundae Wines was merely the next step. The product had to emulate what Rob and Sheri had tasted in all their years of travel. They could only proceed with renowned vintner and family friend Lars Bjorkman, out of Napa, California. They also knew they couldn’t sacrifice quality. Cutting costs by using modern methods to speed up a process established in tradition and time wouldn’t do.
It worked. The Chardonnay tastes of French oak and apple pie, rich, and creamy. The Pinot Noir has a hint of baked berries and chocolate mousse. Much like an ice cream sundae (Queue ah-ha moment) these wines have achieved a layered complexity unrivaled at their price point (never more than $25 a bottle).
After all of the tastings and research, what was the one takeaway lesson for Rob and Sheri? Their answer: you don’t have to go to the other side of the globe to achieve something world class.
For the Niemeyers, Boulder represents home. It was clear they needed not look further. Sheri’s daughters all graduated from the University of Colorado and became an integral part of the production team. Molly tells the stories of her family through the copy she writes for the company. Katie is the in-house designer responsible for the brand design, down to the cherry on top. Yes, you will have to uncork a bottle of Sundae Wines yourself to understand that reference. Their investors, also Colorado-based, have grown to become close friends. The Boulder community has embraced the wine and shown dedicated support. It is clear their theory holds true; the success of this company is unequivocally a family affair.
As I left Rob and Sheri’s home, I felt like I was saying goodbye to dear friends. They asked which wine was my favorite.
“I can’t believe I’m saying this, but the Chardonnay was exceptional.”
I am an exclusive red drinker. Within the second I had a bottle to take home. I was asked about the Pinot as well.
The joy of wine and the thrill of the adventure this Boulder family has taken head-on is infectious.