Chardonnay, ‘Peter Martin Ray Vyd’, Ceritas
At 1,800 feet Peter Martin Ray vineyard is the highest site Ceritas sources fruit from. One of two sites that they farm in the Santa Cruz mountains, this vineyard is steeped in history dating back to 1943, when stockbroker-turned-winemaker Martin Ray planted the original Chardonnay vines. 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. A few gifted winemakers, namely those at Arnot Roberts, rediscovered these vineyards, and encouraged Ceritas to join in. What makes this fruit so remarkable is a direct result of the vines’ treatment: raw farmed with minimal manmade input; the vines are constantly seeking water, nutrients and sustenance from deep in the hillside. Characterized by small berries on tiny clusters, this fruit yields wine that is distinctive for its salty, mineral palate, persistent flavors and lingering finish.