LEDGE AND THE ADAMS RANCH VINEYARD
Located in West Templeton in the southwest part of the Willow Creek District, the Adams Ranch and Vineyard is a unique, 40 acre estate with rolling, oak laden hills and a vast, nearly-flat range composed of sandstone, sand and clay loam. The property was purchased by Richard and Susan Adams in the mid 1970s where they built a home and raised three children, the youngest being Mark Adams who started building the vineyard in 2004. Mark married his wife Ciera in 2007 and the two established Ledge Vineyards as a label in 2008. Richard and Susan built a small home for themselves near the original adobe, where Mark and Ciera now live with their daughter Elizabeth, born in 2010. The property ranges from 1100 -1300 feet of elevation and is planted to 15 acres of vines including Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, Cinsaut, Counoise, Roussanne and Grenache Blanc in a variety of soils ranging from densely marbled gravel and rolled stones to silty sand and compact clay.
At the edge of the relatively flat vineyard blocks, the terrain drops dramatically to Sheep Camp Creek and Vineyard Drive in the Northeast and Jack Creek Valley and the Santa Lucia Mountain Range in the Southwest. These dramatic valley surroundings often protect the property from frost and unwanted lingering fog, which tend to be diverted into the surrounding channels. There is terrific exposure to sunlight and coastal breezes, above average water retention, unique soil types and a commitment to low yeilds, which all result in perfumed, elegant and wonderfully nuanced wines that consistently earn exceptional scores from wine publications throughout the world. The vineyard is largely own-rooted and massale propagated to a wide variety of clones. The oldest, a 13 year old block of Bone Rock cloned Syrah (James Berry Vineyard, Estrella clone) has been dry farmed for several years and shows exceptional vigor. The new blocks exhibit a variety of spacings and training methods from as tight as meter-by-meter to as wide as 11' x 11' with Cane and Spur pruning and Guyot, Cordon and Gobelet training methods. Experiments continue with the addition of new clones and techniques introduced almost every year, with a genuine love for the challenges and triumphs of the journey always at the fore front.