Ridge 2010 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
2010 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, bottled August 2012
80% cabernet sauvignon, 17% merlot, 2% petit verdot, 1% cabernet france
Santa Cruz Mountains AVA
13.0% alcohol by volume
Winemaker Eric Baugher's Notes (back label) -
A cold, wet winter set back bud-break and bloom by a month, and an unusually
cool summer followed, slowing growth. In an effort to ensure full ripeness,
we thinned the crop substantially. Harvest extended through October,
finishing in early November. Cold nights chilled the fruit, delaying the
start of natural fermentation until the fourth day. Each lot began malolactic
spontaneously in tank, and finished in barrel a month later. The twenty-four
parcels designated for the Estate Cabernet were blind-tasted in March, and
twenty-two were selected for assemblage. This sensuous wine is enjoyable now,
and will develop fully over the next decade. EB (6/12)
Tasting Notes - Dark ruby to purple color; blackberries, cassis,
violets, licorice; dark berry fruit entry, crushed rock minerals, chalky
tannins, full bodied, lively acid, cocoa, exotic oak spice, chaparral.
-Eric Baugher (1/13)
Video Tasting Note
Presented by winemaker Eric Baugher
In 1886 the Monte Bello vineyard was first planted and construction on the
winery begun. The first vintage was in 1892. In the early 1940s, the last of
the old vineyard was abandoned; in the late forties a few blocks were
replanted. Those cabernet vine — now sixty years old — produced the first
Ridge Monte Bello (1962) and subsequent vintages until the mid-seventies.
By then, abandoned blocks replanted during the sixties were maturing, and
their fruit considered for use in the Monte Bello. A number of those
consistently produced a more accessible wine that developed its full
complexity earlier and these were combined as the "Santa Cruz Mountains."
With the 2008 vintage the name of this stylistically distinct wine becomes
Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, stressing the varietal and the Monte Bello
vineyard as its source.
First RIDGE Santa Cruz Mountains: 1979
Location: Monte Bello Ridge overlooking San Francisco
from the Santa Cruz Mountains, a unique
appellation separating the North Coast from the
Central Coast but not a part of either.
Elevation: 1300' - 2760'
Soils: Decomposing Franciscan green stone mixed with
clay/loam over fractured limestone sub-soils.
Age of Vines: Oldest 1949; further plantings in
1968/9, 1972, 1982, 1987/8, 1990, 1995, 1997/8.
Training: Head-trained, cane-pruned (on single curtain trellis)
Irrigation: Non-irrigated. (Exception: new vines receive
drip irrigation until established.)
Climate: Cool, mountainous — between the
Mediterranean and Maritime Zones.
Exposure: Principally south/southeast
Yields: 1.5 to 3.0 tons per acre
Farming: Sustainably farmed
Rainfall: 33 inches (average)
Bloom: Late June
Weather: Cool, late spring; cold summer and long, mild fall.
Harvest Dates: 3 October - 5 November
Grapes: Average Brix 24.1°
Fermentation: Grapes destemmed, 100% whole berries. Fermented
on the native yeasts.Pressed at eight days. Natural malolactic (45%
in barrel, 55% in tank).
Barrels: 100% air-dried american oak barrels; (16% new, 43% one
year, and 41% two years old).
Aging: Twenty-two months in barrel
Estate-grown grapes, hand harvested. Destemmed and sorted. Fermented
on the native yeasts, full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria.
88mg/L calcium carbonate to moderate unusually high natural acidity in
eight of twenty-two separate fermentors; minimum effective sulfur (35 ppm
at crush, 94 ppm during aging); a fining of seven fresh egg white per
barrel to soften tough tannins. Pad filtered at bottling. In keeping
with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.
||60 cases/pallet (15 per layer)
SRP: suggested retail price per bottle (U.S. dollars)
Decanter (December 2013) - Decanter Top 50 Wines of The Year -
"Great structure and precision, with deep cassis and black cherry fruit,
cedar and forest-floor shadings, and an extraordinarily long finish."
(Rated: 95, 18.5/20)
slideshow online at Decanter.com (may require subscription)
Wine & Spirits (August 2013) -
"Scents of lemon, vanilla and salt air rush through this young chardonnay, a cool mountain wine with a clear
impression of the California coast. It glistens with white cherry flavors, herbal scents of forest underbrush and a
gentle, honeyed aftertaste. Already showing incipient complexity, this will gain depth and breadth over the next
several years." (Rated: 93)
Vinous Media (July 2013): "Readers who can't (or don't want to!) wait for Ridge's
Montebellos to hit their stride should consider the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate. A gorgeous
wine, the 2010 is laced with dark plum, black cherry, jasmine and crushed rocks aromas. Firm yet
beautifully integrated tannins support the saline, crystalline finish." -Antonio
Galloni (Rated: 92)
review online at VinousMedia.com (may require subscription)