La Marea

La Marea, made by Ian Brand of Le P’tit Paysan, is a tiny winery focused on single vineyard Spanish varietals “rooted in the sea, the soil and the sea air”.  Brand believes Monterey and San Benito to be some of the most ideally suited climates in California for Spanish varietals like Albariño, Grenache (Garnacha) and Mourvedre (Monastrell).  The proximity to the cool ocean waters Monterey Bay provides an optimal climate for Albarino while the warmer San Antonio and San Benito Valleys closely resemble the Spanish regions where these grapes thrive.  This region, once the site of a shallow ocean bed millions of years ago, is one of the few spots in California with a high percentage of limestone found in the soil which gives the wines a high naturally acidity.  As with his P’tit Paysan wines, Brand works with fruit harvested at lower Brix, ferments using a combination of native and cultured yeast, and favors neutral oak.
“There’s a lot of unrealized potential in Monterey. It’s the most underdeveloped wine region between Santa Barbara and the Mendocino Coast.” – Ian Brand

Wines

Albariño Kristy Vineyard

Varietal: Albariño

Color: White

Farming Practice: Sustainable

Sustainable. The Kristy Vineyard grows on the western bench over the Salinas River on the broken sediment of ancient sea beds where it is exposed to the consistent cooling winds off the Monterey Bay. Kristy is a special because Albariño in the vineyard reaches full phenological ripeness at low potential alcohol and bright natural acidity later in the season. Usually picked between 20-22 Brix with a sub 3 PH and nearly 9 g/L TA. Whole cluster pressed and cold fermented to preserve aromatics and freshness. Secondary fermentation is arrested.

Chalone Grenache Brosseau Vineyard

Varietal: Grenache

Color: Red

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. The Brosseau Vineyard is located on the famed Chalone Bench in Monterey County, where the granite of the Gabilan Mountains mixed with the remnants of an old volcano and a large limestone deposit. Planted around 2009, this small block will be one of our most exciting sources to watch. Fermented with 50% whole cluster and native yeasts. Aged 11 months on lees in used puncheons and one once-used barrique. 124 cases made.

Grenache ‘Spur Ranch’

Varietal: Grenache

Color: Red

Farming Practice: Sustainable

Sustainable. Spur Ranch Vineyard is part of an 11,000 acre ranch located at a 1000 foot elevation with a fifteen degree south facing slope on the south side of Chalone peak. The soils are high-calcareous content clay over the same mica shist substrate that dominates the Chalone appellation. Fermented whole berry with a small percentage of whole cluster with both native and selected yeast strains. Aged in 100% neutral barrels for 11 months. 135 cs produced.

Grenache Old Vine ‘Besson Vineyard’

Varietal: Grenache

Color: Red

Farming Practice: Sustainable

Sustainable. 100% Grenache. Sourced from 100 year old+ (planted in 1910) own-rooted, non-irrigated vines grown. The Besson family has been farming this plot since they purchased the vineyard in 1922. The vineyard lies just over the Hecker Pass Wind Gap in the alluvial deposits of Uvas Creek. It is one of the coolest climate true old vine patches in California. Picked in late October at 23 Brix. 5-7 days of cold soak, fermented 50% whole cluster with 4 weeks maceration. Less than one third new French oak, aged 16 months sur lie. Racked only upon bottling. Aged 9 months in bottle prior to release. 81 cases produced.

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