Vision for a Vineyard
The vision for 12 Ridges Vineyard is no less than to become an outstanding producer of high-elevation, sparkling and still wines in Virginia.
Like most vineyards, the land anchors everything we do at 12 Ridges. Our current 12 acres of plantings sit on sloping hillsides which offer the necessary air and water drainage. Nurtured by stony soil low in clay and a mix of orientations that provide generous direct and indirect sunlight, the plantings at 12 Ridges promise to deliver exciting fruit. The pronounced swings in temperature from daytime to nighttime will stress the grapes, which helps create complex flavors for our wines.
The challenge of growing vines at a high-elevation relates to the volatile swings in temperature from day to night, which stress the grapes and helps create complex flavors, but put the vines at risk of frosts and freezes.
In crafting our wines, we cut no corners. For our sparkling, intended to be our flagship offering, we use the time-consuming yet time-honored traditional method (often referred to as the méthode classique or méthode traditionelle) typical of the Champagne, France region and widely renowned for yielding the highest quality sparkling wines.
From planting to picking, pressing to bottling – every phase provides our members, guests, and residents with ample opportunity to participate in, and learn about, the delicate art of winemaking.
Our Chardonnay delivers high acidity with balanced brix (sugar) levels most similar to the Champagne region of France rather than Virginia. Our Chardonnay is used in the Blanc de Blanc sparkling wine, its well-known still style, and the Taille One On blend.
Pinot Noir is notoriously hard to grow in Virginia, but our high-elevation presents a somewhat new and exciting canvas for our winegrower, Tim Jordan. Used in both sparkling and still wine, this delicate grape promises lovely red wine.
Riesling is a terroir-expressive grape where the character of the wine is materially impacted by the region where it is grown. Originating in the Rhine region of Germany and common in cool-climate regions worldwide, Riesling tends to exhibit notes of stone fruit and citrus with noticeable levels of acidity.
This grape varietal with light red skins presents a complex flavor profile. Our plantings are likely to be most similar to the acidic yet delicately sweet Pinot Gris from the Alsace region at the border of France and Germany.