“Our philosophy in making wine is “Keep it simple.” We believe that wines are mostly made in the vineyard, and the winemaker’s job in the winery is to make sure nothing goes wrong between the vineyard and the bottle. “
Dewey Kelly, founder and winemaker
Winemaking at Ribbon Ridge
Hand-crafting wines in small 1.5 ton fermenters.
Our philosophy in making wine is “Keep it simple.” We believe that wines are mostly made in the vineyard, and the winemaker’s job in the winery is to make sure nothing goes wrong between the vineyard and the bottle. Our vineyard has consistently produced extraordinary fruit, so while we hover attentively throughout the wine making process, we have a very light hand, allowing the fruit and vintage to take its natural course.
Being small allows us to nurture each wine through the wine making process. Our red Pinot Noir is processed in small 1.5 ton fermenters that allow us to keep each clone and section of the vineyard separate throughout the wine-making process.
When the grapes are ready, they are harvested by hand into five-gallon buckets and collected into slotted picking bins for transport to the winery.
At the winery, the Pinot noir fruit is gently de-stemmed, leaving mostly whole berries in the fermenters. We typically allow the berries to sit for a few days at 50 degrees or below to maximize the amount of contact between the juice and the skin. After a few days, we raise the temperature of the berries to 58 degrees and allow the fermentation to start, in most cases without the addition of commercial yeasts. Ten days to two weeks after the fruit arrives at the winery, primary fermentation is complete. The wine is drained off of the skins and seeds, settled, then racked directly into French oak barrels where it goes through a secondary, malolactic (ML) fermentation through the heart of the winter. Once ML is finished the wine rests pretty much undisturbed until we start preparing it for bottling the next summer.