Peter Martin Ray Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
Bottle Sizes 750ml
Country United States
Appellation Santa Cruz Mountains
Wine Type Red - Still
Varietals Cabernet Sauvignon
Vineyard Peter Martin Ray lies 1,800 feet above the town of Saratoga in the Santa Cruz Mountains. This is the highest elevated vineyard which Ceritas works with.
The vineyard is steeped in history dating back to 1943, 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. 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. Characterized by small berries on tiny clusters, this fruit yields wine that is distinctive for its salty, mineral palate, persistent flavors and lingering finish.
Soil Fractured shale and clay
Viticulture The grapes were brought to the winery on September 6, a full 10 days earlier that in 2013. Weather through the growing season was moderate through much of flowering, set and veraison. A warm July pushed the grapes towards maturity more quickly than in years past. But once the heart of August rolled around, things started to cool off allowing a slow drawn out ripening period. Flavors developed slowly while acidities remained high preserving freshness and vibrancy in the fruit.
Vinification In the winery, Raytek continues to tailor his work towards drawing out the best from the site. The grapes are harvested in the cold early morning hours when the high elevation fog is just starting to peal away from the vineyard and reveal the now 90-year old vines. Once at the winery, the grapes were fully de-stemmed to allow fermentation to proceed at its own pace without the intervention of a cold soak or heating of the tank. Fermentation lasted 29 days which produced a wine of great depth, complexity and perfume.
Aging Aged for 32 months in combination of used and new (35%) Bordeaux barrels with minimal sulfur until just before bottling. Unfined, unfiltered.
Production Extremely limited.
Publication Vinous Rating 95
The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Peter Martin Ray Vineyard will delight lovers of old-school California Cabernet. Bold, savory and super-expressive, the 2015 hits all the right notes. Despite its very classic sense of structure, the 2015 can be enjoyed with minimal cellaring, although a few years in bottle will help the mountain tannins soften. Translucent, nuanced and expressive, the 2015 is a winner from Ceritas.
– Antonio Galloni, July 2018