Happy Friday Friends,
For those of you who have consumed a decent amount of this blog, you know that it can be cyclical, and like the wine calendar, repetetive. This is the dormant time for the vines, we tend to bottle a decent amount of wine in the "off" season, and we clean up around the ranch.
I spent most of the day today building a chicken coop, and we look forward to welcoming our new flock in the coming days (photos to come). We also have some pretty major vineyard projects going on. As much as it pained us, we ripped out about 2 acres of vines this week. It was half of our original block of Estrella clone Syrah, planted in 2005 when, frankly, I was either at Saxum assisting Justin Smith in the cellar or commuting back and forth to Sony Pictures raising farming funds in the editorial studio. As a result of this preoccupation with survival, the vines did not have full-time attention and we lost a fair amount of them. They provided us with 11 vintages of great Syrah and we are grateful, but now is the time to replant and make the block stronger than ever. We will diversify the block as we replant with Syrah, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut, Counoise, Roussanne and Clairette (we have our eyes set on an estate white wine when fortune and demand prevail).
Folks have been asking when we will ship our Spring release. It will be allocated in April and consist of 2019 James Berry Vineyard and 2018 MCA Cuvée and a few suprises to be announced soon. Standby.
If you would like to "Zoom Taste" with us, send an email. We are happy to oblige.
More updates and photos soon. Thank you for checking in.
Like the vines, we have been relatively dormant wine-wise from the completion of harvest up until the New Year. Like everyone, we spent most of our time at home, utilizing the quarantine to get creative in the kitchen and dive deeply in to landscaping and other ranch beautification activities. I have hauled more rocks around this place than I can count, making borders, paths and planters for a vast array of beautiful, water-conscious plants like Manzanitas, Agaves, Sages and Aloes. We cannot wait to have you back for appointments.
January saw an uptick in the cellar as we blended and bottled four new wines, including the 2018 MCA Cuvèe, the 2019 James Berry Vineyard Rhône blend and two exciting new wines under our California Soul label. These wines are gorgeous and will be released in our spring allocation.
In mid-January we participated in a Wine LA (Ian Blackburn) event called "The Wine Stars of California" where we joined a handful of other producers from around the state to discuss and taste some delicious wines virtually via zoom. We will be participating in another such event on February 26th at 7pm called "Rhone Warriors". While I believe this event is sold out, please do check their Wine LA website for more information.
The big news for January was our massive rain event. The Adams Ranch Vineyard saw nearly 11 inches of rain in just a few days. The vineyard is saturated, the birds are singing and we are excited for this bright new year.
All appointments for tastings are currently on hold but if you are Interested in tasting with us virtually via zoom we are happy to accomodate you. Please email us here to make an appointment.
Mark & Ciera Adams
Hello again and welcome to the latest update from Ledge Vineyards. All of our delicious 2020 wines are safe and sound in barrel and we've turned our focus yet again to the vineyard.
Prior to the recent rains, we broadcast green organic compost throughout the vineyard. One of the most important aspects of farming is to give back to the soil every year to maintain a healthy level of nutrients. We will follup this up with a nitrogen fixing cover crop to build up the richness of the soil.
We are also in the process of ordering new vines to flesh out our vision for future blending, incuding new strongholds of Mourvedre, Cinsaut, Counoise, Roussanne, Clairette and Grenache Blanc. We will also be reinforcing our blocks of Syrah and Grenache which are the backbone of our vineyard. Ultimately, as we have mentioned before, we will have two estate blends from the Adams Ranch. One will be a white wine composed of Roussanne, Clairette and Grenache Blanc, and a red wine composed of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, Cinsaut, Counoise and Roussanne. Exciting!
We have openend up the wine shop to the general public, and while several wines are sold out, there are a few rare finds in there. Feel free to reach out for specific and potentially unlisted wines, as we have a few things that are extremely low inventory wise, but available. Don't be shy, reach out and say hi!
Until next time, take care of yourselves and thanks as always for stopping by.
Mark & Ciera Adams
Ciera and I are happy to report that all of our fruit is in and has finished fermenting. We had a relatively incident-free harvest (we had our loaded trailer detatch from the tractor one morning but we fixed it) and all of our lots came back from the lab with great numbers. As for the ferments themselves, they all ticked away beautfully and went completely dry without issue.
We want to thank our wine club for another great year. We appreciate you very much. We wouldnt be able to take this wild ride without you.
The wine shop is now open to the general public with the exception of a few rare wines that we need to make sure are safely delivered to our wine club.
We included a few photos of the action below.
Mark & Ciera
Adams Ranch Vineyard - Grenache Pick in action. Our assistant Kacee Fox is seen taking care of business.
Aerating the wine in the cellar halfway through the ferment.
2020 Adams Ranch safely in barrel. Night night!
Please visit the wine shop to peruse the wines. Photo: Kyla Rudd.
The grape picking aspect of harvest is nearly finished and we are about 4 weeks away from being completely wrapped and barreled down.
The first pick from the Adams Ranch fermented beautifully and is safely in barrel. The composition was 65% Syrah, 16% Cinsuat, 11% Roussanne and 8% Grenache. We used new Atelier French oak barrels.
The second Adams Ranch pick (100% Syrah) and the first James Berry Vineyard pick (Grenache, Syrah and Roussanne) are nearly dry and will be pressed into barrels this week.
We will picking Bien Nacido this Tuesday (100% Syrah) and the final pick at Adams Ranch Thursday (Grenache and Cinsuat).
Photos coming soon!
The fun thing about this movie is that it is not available for streaming anywhere.
Dig through your archives and find your DVD, Blue Ray or Betamax.
Kevin Kline and Meg Ryan at their best.
It's starting to get busy around here.
Adams Ranch is picking Syrah on Thursday 9/30.
Happy to join MJ @blackwineguy and Sonja @clemcarterwines and @casadumetzwines for #grenacheday supporting @hospicedurhone Link in bio (& details below) for our participating #Grenache #redwine
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The 2016 Rolph Family Vineyard checks in as 100% Grenache that spent 20 months in a mix of new and used French oak barrels. It offers up a pretty bouquet of kirsch and strawberry fruits intermixed with plenty of white pepper, sappy herbs, spring flowers, and incense. It's another ethereal, elegant, beautifully pure red from Mark Adams that has balance, class, complexity, and length.
-Jeb Dunnuck 94pts
Wine Release News Up Front:
Wine Club allocation is about to close and we will then open up all of our releases for direct purchase in an updated online store. If you are in the wine club and missed the email, please check your bulk and spam folders. Wine club will always have direct access to certain exclusive wines and experiences, so don't hesitate to inquire about your status. We appreciate your orders.
Lately we've been seeing plenty of smoky, ashy, apocalyptic, orange-hued photos from the western United States. It's as if there is a solar eclipse happening here in Paso Robles as I write this.
With all of the precariousness in the world, perhaps the best thing for us to do is remain steadfast in our positive habits while indulging in the odd guilty pleasure.
Ciera and I have been working out more regularly, eating healthier, and exploring new wine clubs and wine-oriented streaming education. As much as we miss the regular, personal space of our friends and family, we are able to text, call and video conference with people more often than we did prior to the pandemic.
Which brings me to this invitation.
Many of you probably don't know that my personal cell phone number is on the bottle. Call it! We are absolutely open to hosting remote tastings if you are out of the area. Interested in "sold out" library wines? We are always finding old treasures in the warehouse. A few months ago we found a case of 2014 G2 Vineyard Tannat. We popped one, it tasted amazing, so we sold a few bottles. We don't keep these wines for sale on the website because there simply aren't enough to go around.
So text, call, email and inquire within. The most fulfilling thing about having a family winery is that we get to make all of the decisions ourselves. We delight in meeting and sharing special wines with those of you who appreciate them the most.
Mark Adams (and Family)
This morning the fog was so thick we couldn't see the end of the vineyard. It was donwnright chilly. Come afternoon time I was sweatin' bullets. The diurnal temperature shift has consistently been around 50 degrees, which can be fine if it's from the 40's to the 90's, but when the highs are in the triple digits, we definitely see stress in the vines. This weekend we are expecting temperares to be up to 110 in Paso Robles. Verasion is almost complete in the Syrah, but we have several more weeks for the Grenache and Cinsaut. With teperatures like this we can be fooled by spiking sugar levels in the grapes, so we try to wait for consistently cooler temperatures to prevail before calling a pick. This lets the vines "recalibrate" so to speak. The sugars will go back down a few brix and the composure of the vines will become steady.
If you haven't received your wine allocation email, we are working on that now. Please make sure to add firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com to your contacts. We have had a few people find our notification emails in the dreaded junk folder. We always send at least three notification emails out prior to running wine club. This also gives everyone an opportunity to customize their orders.
If you would like an allocation or to schedule an appointment, please email either of those addresses.
Thanks for visiting.
More next week!
San Luis Obispo and Paso Robles wine country got a much needed break from the smoke and the fires, thanks to the hard work of our firefighters and some timely weather. Our hearts go out to those who are still dealing with the fires, and for that matter, wild weather and apocalyptic circumstances throughout the country and around the world.
Stay tuned to learn about a few upcoming charitable opportunities that Ledge will be participating in to assist with victims of the fires as well as Covid-19.
In wine club news, the allocation will be closing tomorrow. If for some reason you missed out, don't hesitate to reach out to us directly.
Hang in there everyone!
We Apprecate You,
Mark & Ciera Adams