|WineSmith 2018 Norton|
Although most wine experts confine their expertise to the European Vitis vinifera varieties, there are almost 100 other Vitis species, some of which make very good wine.
Dr. Norton was a 19th century breeder who crossed a wild Virginia Vitis aestivalis with an unknown parent to produce one of the most respected and widely produced reds in the U.S., with over 500 wineries offering examples.
|WineSmith 2017 Grenache|
There is, in my view, no other region in California that compares to the Santa Cruz Mountains for producing wines of distinctive terroir expression. Something about its mountain soils and mix of sandstone and greenstone, plus the lush surrounding herbs that encircle its tiny vineyards and impart their own distinctive “air-oir” gives each vineyard a unique stamp. The area is moderated by heavy Pacific influence but also lifted above the fog so that it enjoys plenty of cool direct sunlight, the perfect recipe for the grape to express itself.
|WineSmith 2015 Cabernet Franc|
The father of Cabernet Sauvignon, this grape is among the most challenging to work with and seldom is bottled as a pure varietal. Its great vigor requires bright sunlight and a limiting soil to prevent excessive fruit shading, but its delicate aromas will also easily burn off.
|2006 Meritage (Planet Pluto)|
When scientists rejected planetary status for Pluto in 2003, we took exception. “Planet” is a very old term which means “wanderer,” thus any heavenly body which orbits the sun – is a planet! It doesn’t matter that Pluto doesn’t fall into the categories established for scientific theories of planetary formation. It’s still there, wandering around our solar system, and we can call it a planet if we want to -- it’s our language, not theirs!