Ocean Influenced Wines made in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
“one of the most dynamic up and coming wineries in the state” – Antonio Galloni
“Cult Producer” – Wine Enthusiast
Named in Wine & Spirits 2018 “Top 100 Wineries,” adjacent to Big Basin Redwoods State Park in the Santa Cruz Mountains and first cultivated for grapes a century ago, owner/winemaker Bradley Brown has restored this historic site using CA Certified Organic methods. He creates small production, artisan wines that have received repeated acclaim from In Pursuit of Balance, Antonio Galloni, Stephen Tanzer, Wine Advocate, Rhone Report, Wine and Spirits, Burghound, Wine Enthusiast, etc. Since the first vintage in 2002, his winemaking style has evolved to represent the leaner, brighter, less oaked and lower alcohol style of California wine. Family owned with his sister Wendy Brown and his two sons, he built the winery out of redwood from the estate, which is frequently visited by mountain lions, bobcats, deer, fox and coyotes from the surrounding forest.
Inspired by his brother’s harvest work at Chateau Rayas in the Rhône, and his father’s home winemaking, Bradley enlisted the help of California Rhône Pioneer John Alban to start his winery, and has continued to evolve his minimal intervention winemaking approach with the use of more whole clusters and less new Oak. Their winemaking style includes organic farming in ocean – influenced mountain vineyards , hand harvesting, native yeast fermentation, and bottl ing unfined and unfiltered . Clusters are sorted, destemmed and fermented in open top small fermenters, often including up to 100% whole cluster fruit to slow the fermentation and add complexity before being pressed into neutral and a small percentage of new oak. He selects barrels which best maintain the subtleties of the fruit while supporting and amplifying th ose nuances.
“Bradley Brown’s Big Basin Vineyards is certainly one of the top estates in the Santa Cruz Mountains.” Jeb Dunnuck, Wine Advocate.
Aiming to create wines that reveal the complex nuances of their cool climate, steeply sloped , ocean influenced mountain vineyards, Bradley has sought out the very best sites that meet this criterion in the Santa Cruz and Gabilan Mountains. H arvesting in small lots at ideal ripeness at very low yields , the personality of each site is preserved for expre ssion in the bottle. The Estate Vineyard has been Certified CCOF since 2009
Roussanne, Homestead Block 2017 Santa Cruz Mountains Estate Certified Organic 91 Points, Galloni Unique in the Santa Cruz Mountains this one acre of Certified Organic Roussanne has exceptional finesse, floral aromatics and body. 135 cases.
Chardonnay, Coastview Vineyard 2016, Gabilan Mountains (MontereyCounty) Organic Farming 93 Points, Galloni, Vinous: “Powerful and ample in feel, with superb freshness, it offers terrific nuance as well as complexity.” From steep 2300’ slopes overlooking the Monterey Bay. Slow and cool native fermented, 18% new French oak, unfined, unfiltered. Decanting opens. 360 cases.
Rosé of Rhone Red Varietals 2019, Limited! Floral nose of peach and apricot, with minerality, stone fruit and clean, vibrant acidity. Bone dry, early-picked, whole cluster pressed, slow-fermented with native yeasts, un-oaked and unfiltered (and may have a trace of sediment). 48% Grenache and 30% Carignan, with Syrah and Mourvedre. 420 cases.
Pinot Noir, “Dune and Mountain” 2019, 55% Monterey County/ 45% Santa Cruz County 12.6% Alcohol New Vintage Winery Notes: “Sourced from two vineyards, a sandy slope at Lester Vineyard near the Monterey Bay, and a 2200 foot high decomposed granite mountain top. Bright, red-fruited and spicy style. 100% whole cluster fermented using native yeasts, unfined and unfiltered. No new oak. 375 cases.
Pinot Noir, Coastview Vineyard 2016, Gabilan Mountains (Monterey County) 13% Alcohol 96 Points, Pinofile 95 Points, Jeb Dunnuck, WA: “Delicate with pretty red fruits, smoked earth, spring flowers, and spice aromas and flavors. It has juicy acidity and terrific purity, is medium-bodied, elegant and lively. One of my favorites.” Native fermented. 88% whole clusters, 40% new French oak. 355 cases.
Pinot Noir, Lester Family Vineyards 2016 Santa Cruz Mountains 13% Alcohol 95 Points, WE 95 Points, Jeb Dunnuck, WA: “A beauty, it has a good mix of red and black fruits, spicy oak, sappy flowers, and underbrush. Juicy, taut, and vibrant on the palate, with bright yet integrated acidity, it has a balanced style that’s going to benefit from 2-3 years of cellaring and keep for a decade or more.” Farmed sustainably in the ocean-cooled Corralitos Foothills near the Monterey Bay. 100% whole cluster, 25% new French oak. 415 cases.
“Homestead” Red Rhone Blend 2017, California (Gabilan and Santa Cruz Mountains) 92 Points, Galloni: “Bright, savory notes give the wine terrific energy. Ripe red fruit, mint, flowers and dried herbs infuse it with notable complexity and character. Such an attractive and expressive wine.” 52% Grenache, 23% Carignane, 20% Syrah, 5% Mourvèdre. No new oak. 840 cases. GSM 2015, Gabilan Mountains, Monterey County New Vintage! 93 points, Wine Enthusiast: “From the Chalone AVA, this 53% Mourvèdre, 30% Grenache and 17% Syrah blend offers rich caramel, chocolate, black- cherry and bay leaf aromas. Rich black-plum, rounded acidity and tannic tension.” Mountain vineyard intensity. Native yeast, no new oak, 300cases.
Syrah 2017, Santa Cruz Mountains (98%Estate grown) 13.8% Alcohol 91 Points,Galloni Winery Notes: “A beautiful vintage with excellent flavor at lower sugar levels. 46% whole clusters amplify mouthfeel and savory qualities, while 2% Viognier adds complexity and floral qualities.” Steeply sloping 1300’ mountain vineyard. 46% whole cluster, native fermented. No new oak. 420 cases.
Syrah, Rattlesnake Rock Estate Vineyard 2014, Santa Cruz Mountains CCOF Organic 93 points, Wine Enthusiast: “Blackberry, cassis, caramel and chocolate sauce on the nose. Soft with structure and buoyant acidity; flavors of fresh dark berry and lively purple flowers.” From a steep mountain slope, yields 2 tons/acre. 9% whole cluster, 24% new French oak. 280 cases.
Bordeaux Varietal Blend “Altitude 2292,”Coastview Vineyard 2016 91 Points, John Gillman, View from the Cellar: “A youthful bouquet of cassis, dark berry, cigar, soil and cedar. Deep, full core of fruit, firm, ripe tannins and fine focus and grip on the long and complex finish.” Atop the cool and breezy mountain overlooking the Monterey Bay and the Salinas Valley. 44% Cab, 38 Merlot, with Franc, Malbec and PV. 42% whole cluster, 33% new French oak, unfined, unfiltered. 167 cases.
Represented by Rising Star in the Central Coast up through San Mateo County, the Central Valley, Greater Sacramento area and Lake Tahoe