Proprietary Red, ‘Estate’, Continuum
Four generations of the Mondavi family have grown and produced wines among the world’s finest. Cesare Mondavi was the first to bring wine to the table but it was his son Robert’s passion for excellence, which inspired both his family and the world. Tim and Marcia Mondavi, along with their children, maintain this continuum of excellence, innovation and tradition at their estate, high on Pritchard Hill.
All great wines begin with a great site. From our early days in St. Helena to our father Roberts’s establishment of his winery in Oakville, our family has recognized the importance of this; Continuum takes the next step. Continuum had to be a hillside site, on the east side of the valley with a westerly aspect. Continuum also needed the right soil; volcanic, iron rich soils to grow wines with great structure, focus and agebility. Four generations and a lifetime of experience brought us to this estate on Pritchard Hill. Our estate has the perfect combination of soils, exposure and climate to grow wine in the company of the world’s finest.
Continuum Estate is located on the east side of Napa Valley high on Pritchard Hill, overlooking Oakville to the west. Low vigor red, rocky, volcanic and loam soils make this a truly magnificent hillside vineyard. The estate has two distinct soils types-Rock-Hambright loam & Sobrante loam. Both sets of soil are a mix of clay loam, fractured volcanic material and immense quantities of andesite rock. These shallow soils drain well with low to moderate fertility. Elevations range from 1325 to 1600 feet with southwest and west facing slopes. This location is the perfect site to grow rich, concentrated Cabernet family fruit.
We believe the great wines of the world faithfully reflect their sites. The first three vintages from Continuum emphasize our family’s historic roots in Oakville. Since 2008 we have sourced predominantly from our Pritchard Hill vineyards and as of 2012, Continuum is 100% estate grown and bottled. We emphasize the varieties our estate grows best; Cabernet Sauvignon for its rich, powerful base, Cabernet Franc’s silk and length, Petit Verdot brings generous color and strength, all harmonized by a small amount of Merlot. This unique blend captures the essence of our wine growing. Continuum is an integrated and balanced wine; silky in texture, long and supple with both power and elegance.
Currently 41 acres are in production with new vineyard development under way bringing the total to 60 acres over time. Average yield is 1.8 tons per acre with vine age averaging 20 years. Cabernet Sauvignon makes up 55% of the plantings, Cabernet Franc 30%, Petit Verdot 11% and Merlot 4%. Vineyard spacing, row direction, rootstock and clonal choices are selected to match the specific needs of each 1-2 acre vineyard block. The combination of a longer high-elevation growing season, more even frost free temperatures and low vigor stony mineral soils combine to create an ideal setting to grow great red wine. At Continuum we are stewards of the land and farm accordingly. Our vineyard practices are organic though not certified.