The 2019 Chardonnay Peter Martin Ray Vineyard is marked by its searing minerality. Fruit is very much in the background. What comes through is a whole range of saline, chalk, white pepper and grapefruit nuances. There is a real feeling of phenolic intensity to play off the wine s linear feel. This rocky site at elevation produces Chardonnays of tremendous distinction.
Anticipated maturity: 2024-2034
High in the hills at 1,800 feet, above the town of Saratoga, is the Peter Martin Ray vineyard, Ceritas highest site. In the 1920s stockbroker-turned-winemaker Martin Ray planted the original Chardonnay vines here, on meagre 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. Farmed with minimal manmade input, the vines are constantly seeking water, nutrients and sustenance from deep in the hillside. The Chardonnay is characterised by small berries in tiny clusters. Much deeper gold than the Trout Gulch. Subtle, layered and interesting nose combined with real freshness. Most intriguing and with a lot more to it than many a white burgundy. Rich, tightly knit flavours on the palate all drawn together at the end with a tiny bit of texture.
Anticipated maturity: 2021-2026