2008 Ridge Vineyards, Monte Bello, Santa Cruz Mountains, California, USA

2008 Ridge Vineyards, Monte Bello, Santa Cruz Mountains, California, USA

Product: 20088005188
Prices start from £1,200.00 per case Buying options
2008 Ridge Vineyards, Monte Bello, Santa Cruz Mountains, California, USA

Description

Monte Bello 2008 is the first vintage with only Cabernet and Merlot in the final blend. 'We think press wines can really make all the difference.' Very firm and savoury with a trace of lively, savoury US oak on the nose at the moment. Beautiful texture, rich and round.
Jancis Robinson MW, jancisrobinson.com - March 2010
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6 x 75cl bottle
BBX marketplace BBX 1 case £1,200.00

About this WINE

Ridge Vineyards

Ridge Vineyards

Ridge Vineyards makes wines that compete in terms of quality and desirability with Bordeaux First Growths and Grand Cru White Burgundies. Winemaker Paul Draper has crafted 43 vintages at Ridge and his practical, hands-off approach to winemaking has resulted in an exceptional and highly sought-after range of wines.

Although a vineyard was first planted near the top of Monte Bello Ridge in the Santa Cruz Mountains in 1885, it lay abandoned until four Stanford Research Institute engineers bought it in 1959. Ridge Vineyards was formed in 1962 and Paul Draper was appointed as winemaker in 1969. After stunning the world by their triumph in the 1976 Judgement of Paris tasting, Ridge Vineyards shot to fame and gained cult status almost overnight.

Since then, Ridge has concentrated on producing fine Bordeaux blends and Chardonnays from Monte Bello's exalted terroir as well as renowned Zinfandels from the Lytton Springs and Geyserville vineyards in Sonoma County.

Ridge's ethos is simple: 100% dedication in the vineyards to grow the most concentrated and flavoursome grapes followed by 100% dedication in the winery with minimum intervention to draw all the fruit's natural richness into the wine.

Paul Draper has studiously dedicated himself to employing traditional Old World methods in the creation of his wines, resulting in silky smooth reds with fine tannins and glorious fruit. The wines are racked and fined but remain unfiltered so as not to lose any character before being matured in new American oak barrels.

Ridge Monte Bello, once pure Cabernet, has been a Cabernet-dominated blend since 1975 with varying quantities, depending on the vintage, of Merlot, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc to add complexity to the final wine. The Monte Bello Chardonnay, arguably California's most respected white wine, is elegantly structured and rivals the finest White Burgundy Grand Crus.

Since 1972 Ridge has also specialised in top-quality Zinfandel blends from the Lytton Springs and Geyserville vineyards in Sonoma County and in 1979 the Santa Cruz Mountains Cabernet blend joined the range to offer a softer, earlier drinking companion to the famed Monte Bello.

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Santa Cruz Mountains

Santa Cruz Mountains


The Santa Cruz Mountains AVA is a Viticultural Area that is based around the Santa Cruz Mountains in California. The appellation enjoys a large diveristy of micro-climates, affected by the mountain topography, the Pacific Ocean, and the nearby San Francisco Bay.

The  wine appellation encompasses 1,500 acres of vineyards, dominated by mainly Pinot noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, with more smaller blocks of Cabernet Franc, Carignane, Dolcetto, Grenache, Malbec, Malvasia, Merlot, Mondeuse, Mourvedre, Nebbiolo, Petit Verdot, Petite Sirah, Sangiovese, Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah, Viognier, Zinfandel.

Notable wineries in the appellation include: Bonny Doon Vineyard,  Ridge Vineyards , Neely

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Cab.Sauvignon Blend

Cab.Sauvignon Blend

Cabernet Sauvignon lends itself particularly well in blends with Merlot. This is actually the archetypal Bordeaux blend, though in different proportions in the sub-regions and sometimes topped up with Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and Petit Verdot.

In the Médoc and Graves the percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend can range from 95% (Mouton-Rothschild) to as low as 40%. It is particularly suited to the dry, warm, free- draining, gravel-rich soils and is responsible for the redolent cassis characteristics as well as the depth of colour, tannic structure and pronounced acidity of Médoc wines. However 100% Cabernet Sauvignon wines can be slightly hollow-tasting in the middle palate and Merlot with its generous, fleshy fruit flavours acts as a perfect foil by filling in this cavity.

In St-Emilion and Pomerol, the blends are Merlot dominated as Cabernet Sauvignon can struggle to ripen there - when it is included, it adds structure and body to the wine. Sassicaia is the most famous Bordeaux blend in Italy and has spawned many imitations, whereby the blend is now firmly established in the New World and particularly in California and  Australia.

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Reviews

Customer reviews

Wine Advocate95+/100
jancisrobinson.com18/20
Robert Parker94-96/100

Critic reviews

Wine Advocate95+/100
The 2008 Monte Bello is marked by the drought vintage, which not only made a more concentrated crop but also deprived the blend of all supporting varieties, as only Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot handled the dry conditions sufficiently gracefully to make the final cut. At age ten, this muscular Monte Bello is finally beginning to unwind, offering up rich aromas of black cherry, cassis, dried mountain laurel, loamy soil and burning embers. On the palate, it's full-bodied, expansive and powerful, its generous, sweetly fruited attack giving way to a taut, firm mid-palate that doesn't show as much finesse as the 2010 or 2012, concluding with a long, stony finish. Baugher observes that in its youth, the 2008 was monolithic and more angulara mouthful of tannin. A decade later, it's beginning to soften, but it still requires another 5 or 6 years of bottle age.
William Kelley - 31/05/2018 Read more
jancisrobinson.com18/20
Monte Bello 2008 is the first vintage with only Cabernet and Merlot in the final blend. 'We think press wines can really make all the difference.' Very firm and savoury with a trace of lively, savoury US oak on the nose at the moment. Beautiful texture, rich and round.
Jancis Robinson MW, jancisrobinson.com - March 2010 Read more
Robert Parker94-96/100
The 2008 Monte Bello is a blend of 72% Cabernet Sauvignon and 28% Merlot. More successful and higher in quality than the 2007, it exhibits a thicker, deeper, richer purple color, medium to full body, beautifully pure blackberry and cassis fruit, and attractive spicy, earthy notes. This velvety-textured, rich, impressive offering appears to be a strong success.
Robert Parker -Wine Advocate # 187 Feb 2010 Read more