Zabala Vineyard, Arroyo Seco, Monterey County, CA
What we love
Founded in 2013, Maidenstoen Wines is entirely devoted on making single-vineyard Rieslings grown in unique and extreme vineyard sites across California. Zippy and herbal, the 2014 Zabala Dry Riesling shows flavors of ripe stone fruit, citrus, and minerals. Lip-smacking acidity keeps the palate salivating for more. Only 50 cases made!
About this Wine
In a dried-up riverbed at the south end of Monterey County lies the Zabala Vineyard; a small parcel within almost a thousand acres of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The relentless Salinas Valley winds and morning fog are essential elements to this vineyard’s character. Organically farmed since 2012, Zabala’s moderate late season heat and the aggressive leaf-pulling in the vineyard provide for exciting and distinct wines.
When it comes to agriculture, geography and weather are everything. Indeed, the Arroyo Seco AVA reproduces many of the best features of German wine country: terraced vineyards stretching up a river-cut valley, strong winds that slow down the ripening cycle, and plenty of sunshine to develop wonderful fruity and floral characteristics.
Rieslings are extremely versatile on the table, but where it really excels is with seafood and, believe it or not, with fried chicken. Your taste buds will go absolutely bonkers with the combination. Enjoy!
90 points, Wine Enthusiast
- Technical Data
- Blend: 100% Riesling
- Alcohol: 12.27% | Production: 50 cases
- Winemaking: Organically farmed and aged on its lees for six months in a combination of neutral French oak barrels and stainless steel tanks
- Drink now through 2022
Mike Callahan lives and breathes his work – literally. With his two daughters, he lives in a small home in the middle of one of the vineyards where he works.
Mike is a laid-back kind of guy, camera shy, and very curious about Riesling, especially when trying to grow it in difficult vineyards. But, he's also genuine and earnest about his winemaking, explaining that it requires hard work, patience, grit, and of course, a bit of luck.
Mike loves the art, and science, of making wine. "I enjoy the aspect of putting in the work, and having a product at the end of it," he explains. "It’s not something you can produce by snapping your fingers. It's honest work, and that is pretty cool to me.”
Through Maidenstoen Wines, Mike concentrates on high-quality, site-specific Rieslings sourced from unique and challenging sites. He refuses to use what he refers to as "recipe" winemaking. Rather, he takes the grapes from difficult sites, plays with them and intricately works with the fruit chemistry to produce exceptional wines. His wines are a joy to drink.
Vines Grow Here!
Either by magic or unbelievable talent, Maidenstoen’s winemaker has made a stunning, single-vineyard Riesling that beautifully showcases the phenomenal Zabala Vineyard. The strong winds and rocky soil at Zabala Vineyard make it a tough place to grow anything, let alone grape vines.
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Pairing ideas, coming up! Recommendations, we’ve got your back! Ask us anything.