Nestled high in the hills at 1,800 feet, above the town of Saratoga, lays Peter Martin Ray vineyard, our highest site., This vineyard is steeped in history dating back to 1920s when stockbroker-turned-winemaker Martin Ray planted the original Chardonnay vines. It was a brave venture to plant in such meager Franciscan shale soils without any measurable topsoil.
When Martin Ray’s son, Peter Martin Ray, took over the farming of this site, he replanted to the Mt. Eden clone of Chardonnay in the early 1980s and continued to work the Rixford clone Cabernet Sauvignon planted in the 1920’s. What makes this fruit so remarkable is a direct result of the vines’ constant struggle: raw farmed with minimal manmade input; the vines are constantly seeking water, nutrients, and sustenance from deep in the hillside. The Chardonnay is characterized by small berries on tiny clusters, this fruit yields a wine that is distinctive for its salty, mineral palate, persistent flavors, and lingering finish. The Cabernet Sauvignon is a throwback to the earliest Cabernet Sauvignon made in California. It is taught, vibrant and boasts refined tannins and singularity unlike any other Cabernet other than the neighboring Ridge Monte Bello wines.
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