Ridge 2012 Lytton Springs®

2012 Lytton Springs bottle shot

2012 Lytton Springs Vineyard, bottled February 2013
70% zinfandel, 21% petite sirah, 6% carignane, 3% mataró (mourvèdre)
Dry Creek Valley AVA
14.4% alcohol by volume

Winemaker John Olney's notes (back label text) - After two unseasonably cool summers, July alone saw eight days over 100°. In late August, milder temperatures prevailed, providing perfect conditions for a ripe — but not overripe — vintage. Fermentation brought out plentiful color and tannin. During aging, we added wine from one hundred-year-old vines on Hill Five for depth and structure. Spice, brambly fruit, and fine tannins characterize this excellent wine. Enjoyable upon release, it will evolve over the next ten years. JO (11/13)

Tasting Notes - Black cherry, vanilla, toasty oak and mint aromas. Complex flavors of raspberry, black olive, licorice with chalky tannins. Long finish with intriguing notes of pepper and spice. -John Olney (June 2014)

Video Tasting Note

Presented by winemaker John Olney


In 1972, Ridge made its first Lytton Springs from vines planted on the eastern half of the vineyard at the turn of the century, and purchased both the eastern and western portions of the vineyard in the early 1990s, (In the 1870s, under "Captain" William Litton's ownership, the two were part of one property; spelling evolved into "Lytton" by 1903.) The vineyard is planted to zinfandel and its principal complementary varietals.


Lytton Springs map

First RIDGE Lytton Springs: 1972
Location: The bench and hills separating Dry Creek and Alexander Valleys, just north of Healdsburg, Sonoma County.
Elevation: 80' - 160'
Soils: Varied, with a predominance of gravelly clay; gravelly clay loam on hillsides.
Varietal: 70% Zinfandel, 21% Petite Sirah, 6% Carignane, 3% Mataro
Age of Vines: Lytton East: zinfandel, petite sirah, grenache and carignane planted 1901 (32 acres) and 1910 (11 acres); zinfandel and petite sirah, planted 1997-1998 (5 acres), Lytton West: zinfandel, petite sirah, carignane, grenache re-planted 1953-1968 (26 acres); zinfandel and petite sirah, planted 1980's (2.5 acres); zinfandel and petite sirah planted in 1990's (42.8 acres); zinfandel, limited petite sirah, limited carignane, in 2000's (60 acres).
Training: Head trained (no trellis), spur pruned.
Climate: Fog in a.m., warm sunny afternoons, breezes in late p.m.
Exposure: Southeasterly
Yields: 1.5 to 3.0 tons per acre

Video Profile - Lytton Estate Vineyard

Presented by winemaker John Olney

Video Flyover: Lytton Springs East Vineyard

Aerial tour of the Lytton Spring East vineyard. (uploaded to YouTube on 25 March 2015)

Aerial View - Lytton Estate East

View Larger Map

GPS coordinates: 38° 39' 24.38" N, 122° 52' 48.07" W
Note: Lytton Springs tasting room is at this location.

Growing Season

Lytton Springs soil

Rainfall: 24 inches (below average)
Bloom: Mid-May
Weather: Warm spring and a long, mild summer.


Harvest Dates: 25 September - 21 October
Grapes: Average Brix 24.8°
Fermentation: Natural primary and secondary; pressed at eight days.
Barrels: 100% air-dried american oak barrels (25% new; 55% one, two and three years old; 20% four years old).
Aging: Fourteen months in barrel


All estate-grown grapes, hand harvested; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; 0.6 grams/liter tartaric acid; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 parts per million at crush, 155 ppm over the course of aging). Pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.


Bottle UPC Packaged SRP Notes
750mL 744442901005 12x750mL $38 60 cases/pallet (15 per layer)
375mL half 744442900008 12x375mL $21  
1.5L magnum 744442902002 6x1.5L $79  
3L double magnum 744442903009 1x3L $187 individually boxed

SRP: suggested retail price per bottle (U.S. dollars)
Lytton Springs® is a registered trademark of Ridge Vineyards, Inc. in the US and other countries.


  • Vinous Media logo Vinous Media (July 2014): "The 2012 Lytton Springs is quite reserved, compact and inward at this stage. There is good density and depth in the glass, but the elements aren't fully formed just yet. While most of Ridge's 2012s are quite open today, that is not at all the case with the Lytton Springs. The 2012 is going to need time. In 2012, Lytton Springs is 70% Zinfandel, 21% Petite Sirah, 7% Carignane and 4% Mataro (Mourvèdre)." -Antonio Galloni (Rated: 93+)
    Read review online at VinousMedia.com (subscription required)
  • Connoisseurs' Guide Connoisseurs' Guide (January 2015): "Although its aromas do not jump from the glass, this carefully made Zin exhibits fine focus and very articulate varietal fruit that gains intensity and gradually takes center stage in the very well-composed flavors that follow. The wine is moderately full and quite nicely balanced with fine tactile grip owing to its integral young tannins, and it will age famously by dint of its fruity depth and exemplary sense of proportion." Rated: 91 (**)
  • California Grapevine California Grapevine (Vol. 41, January 2015): "Medium to medium-dark ruby; attractive, plummy, blackberry and pomegranate aroma with hints of cinnamon and black pepper; medium-full to full body; briary, blackberry fruit flavors with bright acidity, good depth and balance, and nicely integrated oak; medium-full to full tannin; lingering aftertaste. Enjoyable to drink now and also shows good aging potential. Very highly recommended."
    (Group Score: 16.3, 0/1/1; My Score: 17 [91/100], third place)