VINESVINESVINES

 

SLEEPING DOG VINEYARD

The Sleeping Dog vineyard of Sonoma Mountain was planted by the renown Michael Topolos in 1975.  Topolos was always a bastion for organic viticulture, and his vineyard legacy lives on today. It is an organic, dry farmed field blend vineyard with alicante bouschet and petite sirah planted alongside the zinfandel.  Tucked away into a remote, east facing sight on a mountain slope, the vineyard benefits from its cool surroundings and volcanic/clay loam soils, yielding grapes of balance and finesse.

LAUGHING RAVEN

Laughing Raven vineyard is as far as we go from Petaluma for fruit, but when the opportunity rose to take the entire vineyard we had to jump on it.  It is located in Alexander Valley, northern Sonoma County, and is entirely sandy, alluvial soils.  Planted and farmed sustainably by Jose Zero since 2002, the small 1.5 acre vineyard is entirely sauvignon blanc and yields fruit of intense tropical fruit flavors.

 

BLACK KNIGHT VINEYARD

A gorgeous vineyard at the base of Taylor Mountain, between Taylor and Sonoma Mountains, the 'Black Knight Vineyard' is perched at the very northern edge of the Petaluma Gap AVA and is the coldest vineyard site we work with.  Wind and fog cool this vineyard constantly, so the fruit from here is one of the last we harvest.  Couple this with the compacted volcanic soil that makes the foundation of most of the vineyard and you have the perfect conditions for growing the sort of chardonnay we want to make: low alcohol, bright fruit with intense minerality.  More Burgundian than Californian, the chardonnay we harvest from this vineyard shows way more levels of all different types of acidity than you would find from most other places in Sonoma County.  We claim the oldest chardonnay block on site, planted in the early 90's and farmed organically by Mitch Black and his family.

ALEGRIA VINEYARD

The Alegria Vineyard of Russian River Valley is one of the oldest vineyards in California, the oldest vines dating back to 1890.  Most of the vineyard is planted in a traditional 'field blend' style of old Sonoma County vineyards - with many blocks being predominantly one grape, but with dozens of other varietals peppered in with the main varietal.  We get our sangiovese and the syrah for our rose from the west facing 'acorn hill' of the property.  Sandy loam soils typical of the Russian River Valley dominate this vineyard.  Our sangiovese is one of the 'field blend' blocks, composed of 95% sangiovese but with 5% of Canaiolo, Mammolo, Tannat, Petite Bouschet, and Malbec, all harvested and crushed together.

BERGER VINEYARD

Located above Glen Ellen on Sonoma Mountain about 800 elevation, the dry farmed Berger Vineyard looks out eastward to stunning panoramic views of Sonoma Valley and Mt. Veeder and the Mayacamas on the other side of the valley.  The property has been in Fred Berger’s family for more than 100 years and was named “Oak Shade Ranch” by Fred’s grandmother.  This is where our cabernet grapes come from, and it's an amazing and remote vineyard whose well drained clay and loam soils bear little grapes with a lot of intensity.  The vineyard is well protected from frost, as the cold air drains away.  The mountain top lies to the southwest and tends to break the fog, creating a sunspot with dramatic light spots over the vineyard, even when surrounding areas and the valley below are occluded.  Thus, the vineyard maximizes the sunlight in the morning, but has protection from the colder, marine air that tends to come in the late afternoon.  All these site conditions mean that the grapes have a long hang time, that is, they tend to develop in flavor and the seeds and stems will mature and turn brown well before the sugar levels reach maximum, resulting in more complexity, maturity and balance in the wine.

KELLER ESTATE