In 1886, high in the Santa Cruz Mountains, the first Monte Bello vineyards were planted, and winery construction begun. A first vintage from the young vines followed in 1892. During Prohibition (1920-1933), the vineyard was not fully maintained; some vines survived into the late 30’s, but by the 1940s they were effectively abandoned. Eight acres of cabernet sauvignon were replanted in 1949. These were the source of the first Ridge Monte Bello (1962) and subsequent vintages until 1974 when younger blocks replanted in the 1960’s were considered for inclusion. Since then, the historic vineyards on the ridge have gradually been replanted.
Sustainably farmed, hand-harvested, estate-grown grapes; destemmed and sorted; fermented on the native yeasts; full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; 0.42 g/L calcium carbonate added to moderate the high natural acidity in nineteen of the twenty-five parcels; oak from barrel aging; minimum effective sulfur 35 ppm at crush, 65 ppm during aging; pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.