My name is Mike Stan, I’m the owner of Ritual Wine Company. We’re releasing our debut vintage (2008) next month. The website is http://www.ritualwine.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;. The blog entries detail most of the story of how I went from a humble software consultant to a really humble winery owner. Any feedback is appreciated.
Welcome, Mike…and thanks for the head’s up.
Will you be pouring at RhoneRangers next month at FtMason?
Where are you actually making your wine?
What it your interest in making Rhones in Calif (sorry…didn’t go thru your blog…if it’s there).
Where in Paso is your Viognier sourced from?
I’ve had a casual interest in Calif Rhones for a few yrs and am interested in seeing what you do.
Ray, thanks for the typo alert - I thought we’d got them all by now …
Some fast fax n’ info:
We’re not at Rhone Rangers - we may do the LA show as I’m based in LA, a ‘quick’ 2.5 hr drive from my wine operations in Santa Maria. We will be at Hospice in Paso 5/1
The wine was made at the Fess Parker facility in SM - after we do a summer bottling run we’ll move next door to CCWS and become a bonded winery. The 2008 vintage was made in Solano County.
My interest in making Rhones in CA stems from the fact that as far as reds go, the CA wines I find myself drinking the last few years seem to be Rhones & Pinots (aside from the odd Cal-Ital or zin). I never seriously considered the pinot route, as the cost of pinot grapes was out of sight when I got started (they’ve since come way down of course) and the field has become very crowded. Rhones are generally blend-friendly (I want to do some work w/ various blends) and I could introduce some terrific examples priced much lower than an equivalent quality pinot. And did I mention they taste great?
The PR Viognier comes from Stillwater vineyards on the East Side. A really nice spread w/ about 50 acres of grapes, of which the VG is the most successful varietal planted (imho). I’m going to focus on the Central Coast from 2009 onwards, w/ the exception of Wirth Ranch in Solano County (the astounding syrah from there provided the impetuis for atsrting the company) most everything will be Central Coast (although I may check out Lodi for some lower priced offerings next year)
Apropos of nothing I just retasted the 2009s from barrel and the Wirth Syrah and PR Mourvedre are the current stars w/ the PR Cab Franc close behind (I do have a soft spot for CF) . The 2009 MV comes from Cass.