Ceritas Chardonnay Peter Martin Ray 2020
VINTAGE : 2020
COUNTRY : USA
REGION/APPELLATION : California, Santa Cruz Mountains
VARIETALS : Chardonnay
VINEYARD : Peter Martin Ray
Brainchild of husband and wife duo of John and Phoebe Raytek, Ceritas sells out instantly on the mailing list and a few lucky retailers ( AWCO ) are able to secure small quantities from time to time. Phoebe is a sonoma native having grown up in the famed Porter Bass vineyards ( owned by her Parents) Both John and Phoebe believe that quality of the fruit is what drives commitment to their growers and vineyard sites.
Unlike wineries that purchase fruit with minimal or no involvement in the vineyard, we prefer to be in the vineyards as often as possible, memorize every detail of each row, and wear the dirt. Farming with this level of intimacy allows us to better understand each site and its unique characteristics. It also enables us to provide the greatest opportunity for the vines to experience and express each growing season.Truth be told they spend more time in the vineyards than the winery.
Nestled high in the hills at 1,800 feet, above the town of Saratoga, lays Peter Martin Ray vineyard, our highest site., This vineyard is steeped in history dating back to 1920s when stockbroker-turned-winemaker Martin Ray planted the original Chardonnay vines. It was a brave venture to plant in such meager 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 and continued to work the Rixford clone Cabernet Sauvignon planted in the 1920’s. What makes this fruit so remarkable is a direct result of the vines’ constant struggle: raw farmed with minimal manmade input; the vines are constantly seeking water, nutrients, and sustenance from deep in the hillside. The Chardonnay is characterized by small berries on tiny clusters, this fruit yields a wine that is distinctive for its salty, mineral palate, persistent flavors, and lingering finish.
"Coming from the pure shale soils of a site perched 1800 feet above the fog line, the 2020 Chardonnay Peter Martin Ray is more savory and compact, with white mushroom, peach skin, and a slate-like minerality. The palate is rounder and has a more glycerin feel relative to the rest, with pineapple, orange blossom, and beeswax. Drink over the next 10 or more years." Jeb Dunnuck 95 points