Blue Ridge Vineyard - Zinfandel
Tucked away at the far southeastern corner of Napa County, and virtually unknown, is the Blue Ridge Vineyard on Mt. Vaca. Never heard of it? Not surprising. Unknown to many, Blue Ridge has the distinction of being the highest vineyard in the Valley, cresting at 2,810 feet. This elevation produces grapes with unusual character, where the vines ripen slowly, maturing the flavors. Sold exclusively to Girard from the Harris family, some of the Zinfandel vines date back 35 years.
"The vineyards are comprised of four separate fields or terraces which we simply call 'The Hill', 'The Second Level', 'The Well' and 'Mary's Vineyard'" says Mary Harris.
The Hill Vineyard
"This Hill Vineyard can be best characterized as hot, with full sun most of the day and cold in the morning with the westerly breezes off the Pacific Coastline. The Hill is the most northwest facing of all the terraces. From this terrace, you can see right up the heart of Napa Valley and all the way to the coastal ranges.
"As you stand within the lower terrace or 'Mary's Vineyard', you'll first notice that this is the only vineyard that receives any relief from sun. It's little consolation because by midday it's hot — really hot.
The Second Level and Well Vineyards
"Now for the 'Second Level' and 'The Well' Vineyards — the upper most planting — simply put, it's breathtaking. On a clear day you can see southwest to the skyline of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge; southeast to Mt. Diablo; east to the Sierras; and of course northwest, right up the heart of Napa Valley. Too bad our tasting room couldn't be up there for you to enjoy as well!
"We had a choice as to who would get our grapes. We choose Girard because they just seemed the most interesting and we truly believed their desire to craft a spectacular wine," Mary adds.
Godward Hilltop Vineyard - Zinfandel
Together with the Harris' offering, Girard blends fruit from the Godward Hilltop Vineyard in the far northern reaches of Napa Valley, in Calistoga. This vineyard has produced some of the best and most critically acclaimed Zinfandels from not only Girard, but for Frog's Leap and Story Brook Mountain. The two vineyards combine to create what Girard Winemaker Marco Digiulio predicts will be another "One of the Year's Best Zin".
Russian River Valley Vineyards - Chardonnay
The Girard Chardonnay is made entirely from grapes grown in the Russian River Valley, where cooling ocean breezes create a climate ideal for this delicate grape. Girard sources their Chardonnay grapes from three different vineyards – two from Dutton Ranch and La Porte Cochère.
Dutton Ranch Vineyards
The Dutton Ranch Vineyards are located in the cool southern parts of Russian River in Jenner & Mills Station. Girard loves this climate for the wonderful acids it delivers to its wine. The Dutton Ranch Vineyards are in such a cool spot that they are always the last grapes Girard brings in, typically two weeks after the Cabernets.
La Porte Cochère Vineyard
La Porte Cochère Vineyard is in a warmer area in Fulton and delivers rich and ripe flavors to the final Chardonnay blend.