Marietta Cellars

Old Vine Riesling 2018

California, United States

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Marietta’s Old Vine Riesling is the most recent and unique extension of the Old Vine series (or “OVR”). Originally intended as a gift for Scot’s partner, Lisa, who is German, the bone dry style of Riesling became a fan favorite and permanent addition. While it is the only wine is the lineup that is not estate grown, it comes from some of California’s oldest Riesling vines and offers an extraordinary value and delightful drinking experience.

Vineyard

The fruit for this wine comes from the Cole Ranch and Wirz Vineyards. Cole Ranch, a single, 55-acre vineyard at 1,400 feet in elevation, is the smallest AVA in the United States. Planted in the early 1970s by John Cole, this corner of Mendocino is remote, mountainous, and surrounded by redwood forests. Marked by a cool climate and it’s location atop the San Andreas Fault, this is a coveted source of Riesling. The second portion of the fruit come from the Wirz vineyard, four hours’ drive south and also atop the San Andreas Fault. Planted in 1965 and is now hand-tended by Pat Wirz, these dry-farmed vines are the oldest remaining riesling vines in California. These gnarled old vines rest at about 1,000 feet of elevation in the Gabilan Mountains, 25 miles east of Monterey Bay, on a bed of decomposed granite and limestone.

Winemaking

All of the fruit for the Old Vine Riesling is hand harvested, whole-cluster pressed, and fermented in stainless steal. 60% is aged in neutral barrels and 40% is aged in stainless steel.

Vintage

The 2018 harvest was a grower’s dream, though not without its exciting moments. Healthy spring rains and generous fruit set started the vintage off well, followed by a mild to cool August and September when harvest began slowly. Early October rains menaced the remainder of the harvest, but gave way to dry weather through the second half of October and November with beautiful sunny days which slowly ripened the remaining crop.

Tasting Note

With rich aromatics of stone fruit, and honeysuckle, this dry, mineral-driven Riesling surprises with bright acid and a lean texture. Juicy, but clean and precise with a slate-like character on the finish.

Food Pairing

Pair the Old Vine Riesling with mussels, oysters, sushi and raw bar fare or as a counter balance to rich and spicy foods.

Color

White

Grape Varieties

Riesling

Appellation

California, United States

Farming

Organic

Alcohol

12.5%

Suggested Retail Price

$18

Trade Materials

Other Wines by this Producer

Old Vine Red

California, United States

Affectionately known as "OVR," Marietta's Old Vine Red is a proprietary red wine made to replicate the field blends of the old vineyards in Sonoma and Mendocino counties. A groundbreaking combination of grape varitieis and multiple vintages first produced in 1982, this wine has blazed the path for red blends for decades. With an historic underground following, it is one of the longest lasting and best known red blends produced today. Predominantly comprised of Zinfandel, Old Vine Red combines pure fruit, a supple mouth feel and a rich, solid structure.

Old Vine Rosé

California, United States

Marietta's Old Vine Rosé is a perfect extension of the Old Vine series. Made in a Provençale, direct-press style from some of the oldest Syrah and Grenache vines in California, it is fresh, nuanced, and perfectly balanced to enjoy with food or on its own. As always with the "OVR" wines, it delivers a lot more substance and pleasure than you could expect.

Román Zinfandel

North Coast, California

Named after cellarmaster Román Cisneros who has worked at Marietta for over 32 years, this Estate Zinfandel is from the Angeli estate vineyard in Alexander Valley and the McDowell Valley estate vineyard. One of the grape varieties that Marietta is famous for, this wine captures the bright, juicy character of Zinfandel, and hearkens to an era before dark, thick and oaky styles of Zinfandel took hold.

Armé Cabernet Sauvignon

North Coast, California

Named after Armé, the husband of Marietta and great-great uncle of Owner/Winemaker Scot Bilbro, this Cabernet Sauvignon conveys a taut freshness and aromatic purity. Stylistically balanced between modern California and Old World, this wine is dense with fresh, dark fruit and tempered with a savory, earthy character. The dry fly on the label is a reference to Chris Bilbro's long family history of fishing with his great uncle Armé along the waterways that now adjoin the three estate vineyards.

Christo Red Blend

North Coast, California

Named and styled after Chris Bilbro, affectionately called "Christo" by his great-aunt Marietta, this Rhone varietal blend is gentle but powerful, pleasurable but deep, and refined while raw. An ode to Scot's father and founder of Marietta Cellars, this blend is largely Syrah from the McDowell estate, blended with Petite Sirah from the Angeli Estate and Grenache from the Yorkville Highlands Estate. The pig snout on the label is a reminder of how Chris Bilbro made wild boar sausage and carted his creations around the country to share with chefs and wine lovers alike as he sold Marietta wines.

Angeli Zinfandel

Alexander Valley, California

Marietta Cellars sits at the entrance to a small canyon off Alexander Valley. Known as Angeli Ranch after the family who originally settled there in 1886, the property’s vineyards connect gravel swales from the Russian River to terraced knolls invisible from the valley floor. The extremes of this site create a wine that is powerful but has surprising elegance and clarity.

Game Trail Cabernet Sauvignon

Yorkville Highlands, California

From a high elevation site in the Yorkville Highlands with coastal influence and large diurnal shifts, the Game Trail Cabernet offers an intense, fragrant, savory, and fresh style of Cabernet that speaks of site and demands to be paired with food. This area, with trails worn by mushroom hunters and wild game that travel through the woods, was a refuge for Chris Bilbro, who hunted here and searched for Chanterelles. The mushroom on the label is a tribute to this unique place and its significance.

Gibson Block Syrah

McDowell Valley, California

Made from the oldest Syrah vines in California, in the heart of the McDowell Valley AVA, this wine reflects the hidden property where it is grown - quiet, obscure and profound. This ancient, dry farmed, mixed block next to the original Gibson Homestead has been producing grapes for over a hundred years. Limited in production due to the unique grape source, this wine is built to enjoy with food.