Ripken Vineyards & Winery, Inc.
Winery and Tasting Room
Ripken Vineyards & Winery appeals to adventuresome wine drinkers with mostly non-traditional varieties producing extraordinary flavored wines.Considered as an artisan “barnista” winery that is uniquely different, electric, eclectic, quirky, esoteric, even wacky, but never boring or weird. Their motto is, “No Boring Wines, but wines of conviction!
They go down the road less traveled to appeal to wine drinkers that wish to explore the joys of Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier, Malbec, Petite Sirah, Carmine, Petit Verdot, Alicante Bouschet, Tempranillo, Graciano, Souzao, Touriga National, Grenace, Mourvedre, Montepulciano, Barbera, Dolcetto, or Corvina as blends or varietal wines.
The winery produces very small lots of different wines mostly under 100 cases, using classic techniques such as gentle crushing, barrel fermenting white wines, selecting yeasts, hand punchdown, less stirring, long barrel aging, gently crushing, and bottle aging. Our chant is, “These wines were made one bucket, one barrel, one bottle at a time.”
The grape growing focuses on maximizing flavors, reduced but adequate irrigation or non-irrigation, sunlight to the cluster, full ripeness for flavor, moderate size crops, adequate soil fertility and organic matter in soils. All this attention to detail leads to full flavored wines of good mineral content which are balance and enjoyable when released.
The first vintage was in 2003 but they are not new to wine grape growing being third generation growers since 1950. In addition, they grow our own rootstock and have collected different wine varietal clones and selections for forty years. The whole family is involved. See “Meet our Family” to read more about the family members and personalities of Ripken Vineyards & Winery.
We liked this wine a lot. It was especially interesting since this is a SMALL winery that does not produce lots larger than 300 cases a year. The surprise is the sophisticated balance of fruit, oak, alcohol and tannin. Ripken’s Petite Sirah has an appealing bouquet and complex fruit, which includes hints of black-berry, plum and — did we get a touch of apricot? Lots of spice and pepper: give it plenty of air time. The finish is long and lasting. Wonderful with black trumpet mushroom risotto, topped with Parmesan cheese.
The owners add their own twist – “Luscious, juicy, meaty, and bouncy!”
Alc 14.9% • Cases 30 • Price $25
What more needs to be said? Delicious and lovely wine for the money.
Copyright 2012 By Punchin International. All Rights Reserved.
Their Other Wines
2004 Rhônealicious Red, Petite Sirah
Always a favorite, our 2004 Rhônealicious Red Petite Sirah is a blend of our various Petite Sirah vineyards. It has intense deep red color with lovely berry and subtle French oak aromas. Pair with your favorite grilled meats and roasted pork. Barrel aged in French oak for 13 months and bottle aged for almost 3 years. You will appreciate the smooth finish and lush flavors.
2005 Rhônealicious Red, Petite Sirah
The next vintage of the tasters’ favorite is here. Intense deep purple red color with a cherry, berry, pomegranate aromatic nose, complex earth, spice, and acid flavors. Benefits from decanting. Pair with a lamb stew, brisket or pork.
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Under the Sea Vineyards – 19 feet below sea level
2008 Roussanne & Viognier
80% Roussanne 20% Viognier Pull the cork on Ripken Vineyards & Winery’s finest white wine. This wine was cold fermented for 50 days and aged for 3 months in 2-year old French oak barrels. Smell, sip, savoir the rich, luscious aromas & flavors of alpine flowers, peach & pear fruit, orange blossoms, honey, oriental spice, French oak and lime blossoms. In a word this wine has “balance”- between alcohol, fruit, acid, body, aromatics & oak with outstanding minerality thrown in!! Grown 8-miles west of Lodi, at Ripken Vineyards & Winery’s Under the Sea vineyard, the coolest site in the Lodi appellation. Serve with appetizers, salad, or fish, or your favorite Thai dishes. Bronze-2009 International Eastern Wine Competition
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2005 El Matador- Old Spanish Red
Graciano, Granache, Mourvedre Our new Old Spanish Red is a blend of three classic Spanish varieties, Mataro (Mourvedre), Graciano and Garnacha (Grenache). Note the lovely pale red color with raspberry, tea rose and mushroom aromas. It is gamey, spicy and tart with subtle peppercorn and French oak flavors. Serve this friendly table wine with your favorite comfort foods. Pair with roasted chicken, grilled rib-eye or lamb.
2006 El Matador- Tempranillo
Tempranillo is a dark, bright, ruby color. Aromas are rich, spicy, boysenberry and cherry jam. The flavors are tart & rich with unbelievable body and finish. This classic Spanish blend of 90% tinto fino Tempranillo and 10% Graciano takes your breath away with its incredible aromas, bouquet, flavor & finish. It has beyond excellent structure and balance. A Ripken Vineyards & Winery favorite, and a wine of extraordinary character and quality! No one can match this wines rich lush depth of fruit and body. In a word- Voluptuous!! If a wine could speak, this wine speaks volumes!! It is so approachable it will capture your soul! Beware of the El Matador!! Serve with BBQ, beef, pork, or any Spanish dish.
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2004 Petite Sirah
Few Petite Sirahs are as easy drinking and flavorful as our vineyard designated Idyllwild Station Petite Sirah. This west of Lodi single vineyard Petite Sirah is striking in its bold cherry berry pomegranate aromatic nose, smooth blackberry fruit flavor, dark color, black pepper spice, integrated easy drinking tannins and long finish. Few wines are its’ equal! The intense aromas of black cherry are unusual as is the smooth finish. This wine benefits from decanting. It will age for 10 years. This is Ripken Vineyards & Winery’s finest Petite Sirah yet! Serve with hearty lamb stew, beef, pork tenderloin, brisket or BBQ. To a big easy red! Cheers.
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Bred in 1936 by Dr. Harold Olmo, Carmine is a cross of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot & Carignane. A savory “Cabernet” style wine for the Lodi area with intense depth and flavor. Its dark purplish red color is noticeable. The nose and taste is very unique, complicated and distinguished putting ordinary “Cabernet” to shame. It is powerful in Cabernet aromatics- blackberry, olive, herbs, graphite, pencil shavings, tar, red pepper, blueberries, currants, licorice, tart acidity and tamed tannins. Few wines are as full flavored, full bodied, and mouth filling. This wine will age 10-15 years. Decant for a half hour. Serve with your finest lamb racks or beef BBQ.
2004 Wedding Wine- Petite Sirah
This vintage is truly a special wine club release. This vineyard was planted by the out of town wedding guest the day before Ryan and Emily Ripken’s wedding, May 2002. This is the first vintage from this special “Wedding Wine” vineyard of 200 vines. Luscious deep violet color, boysenberry and cherry flavors with smooth tannins and a rich mouth feel. All the great qualities of a great marriage…love, tenderness and devotion! We love Petite Sirah! You will experience romance, take the plunge and make a lifelong commitment. Our Petite Sirah Wedding Wine is superb. Let’s celebrate Ryan & Emily’s 6-year anniversary next month!
2005 Bordeaux Style Red
60% Carmine, 40% Petite Verdot Our 2005 Bordeaux Style Red is a bright dark ruby color. Enjoy the aromas of ripe fruit with hints of wild berry, blackberry, marionberry and red licorice. Also subtle hints of bay leaf, thyme, cracked black pepper and graphite. This wine is a bracing, bright, elegant, focused, very tart red wine with a long tasty complex finish. It has medium body with harmonious velvet tannins. It is easy drinking with many subtle layered flavor nuances. Pair with lamb, steak, ham, pot roast, BBQ ribs, burgers, pasta, turkey & stuffing or beef stew.
2005 Homestead Red
67% Barbera 33% Dolcetto The Ripken blend, Homestead Red, comes from a special place in our family’s vineyards. Originally, the Frowler family homesteaded the land in the 1850’s. This year’s blend is 67% Barbera and 33% Dolcetto produced from only a few hundred vines. The clones were handpicked from the best Italian varietals collected through the UC Davis program. This years blend has cherry cola aromas with classic subtle Barbera pungency and flavors of spice, black cherry, and boysenberry. It is easy drinking, smooth, has subtle French oak with light tannins. Pair with classic Italian fare. Featured on our new night sky label. Extraordinarily juicy, round, tart, fruity and lightly spiced. Only 70 cases produced.
2005 Wedding Wine
Petite Sirah This vintage is truly a special wine club release. This vineyard was planted by the out of town wedding guest the day before Ryan and Emily Ripken’s wedding, May 2002. This is the second vintage from this special “Wedding Wine” vineyard of 200 vines. Luscious deep violet color, boysenberry and cherry flavors with smooth tannins and a rich mouth feel. All the great qualities of a great marriage…love, tenderness and devotion! We love Petite Sirah! Our Petite Sirah Wedding Wine is superb. Let’s celebrate Ryan & Emily’s 7-year anniversary next month!
Ripe strawberries, tart cherries, dried raspberries, tomato, orange peel, toasted walnuts, damp earth. Leather. Dry, medium tartness, very light tannins, moderate alcohol. Makes a great Sangria!!
2005 Vintage Port
Souzao & Touriga National Aromas of intense black cherry, subtle strawberry and boysenberry. Flavors of cocoa, black licorice, mint, menthol and pine. Dark ruby red color, rich balanced body, smooth tannins, chewy fruit flavors and integrated alcohol.
2006 Late Harvest Viognier
From the moment you pull the cork on this exquisite dessert wine you’ll see the golden honey color that tips you off that this is no ordinary dessert wine. Flavors of orange blossoms, honey suckle, white peaches, and ripe apricots. A dessert in a glass, but also can be served as an aperitif to start the party off right. Enjoy with cheese, salad, or dessert. No other dessert wine is its’ equal in complexity, sweetness, fruit character & subtle French Oak.
© 2006 Ripken Vineyards & Winery, Inc. All Rights Reserved.