In 1886 the first blocks of the Monte Bello vineyard were planted and construction on the winery begun. The first vintage was the 1892. In the early 1940s, the last of the old vineyard was abandoned; in the late forties a few blocks were replanted. Those cabernet vines—now over sixty-five years old—produced the first Ridge Monte Bello (1962) and subsequent vintages until 1974. By then other abandoned blocks had been replanted and their fruit considered for use in the Monte Bello. A number of those consistently produced a more accessible wine that developed its full complexity earlier and these were combined as the “Santa Cruz Mountains.” With the 2008 vintage the name of this stylistically distinct wine became the Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, stressing the principal varietal and the Monte Bello estate vineyard as its source.
Saturated purple in colour. Aromas of cassis, blueberry, cola, liquorice, and sweet oak. Ripe blackberry fruit entry, full bodied, rich textures, exotic spice and toasted oak. Complex, long, sensuous finish.
"The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate comes from the Santa Cruz Mountain estate, and it follows its big brother Monte Bello’s style with a terrific sense of elegance paired with richness. Lots of crème de cassis, crushed violets, vanilla, tobacco leaf, and cedar notes flow to a medium to full-bodied, beautifully concentrated, layered Cabernet Sauvignon that has terrific purity, building tannins, and a great finish. It offers pleasure today yet won’t hit prime time for another 5-7 years, and it’s going to evolve for 15-20 years (probably longer)." 94 points, Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com
94 points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media
93 points, Erin Brooks, The Wine Advocate
Ridge Vineyards Estate Cabernet Sauvignon