A Visit to Mauritson Family Winery
Mauritson Family Winery is easily accessible on Dry Creek Road, the main corridor of Sonoma’s Dry Creek Valley. The Mauritson family arrived here in 1868 and planted its first vines in 1884. Today, the company farms 230 acres in Dry Creek and Alexander Valley, and produces wine under a handful of different labels, all of which are sampleable in its Dry Creek tasting room. The Mauritson brand handles the basics, largely from the Dry Creek area, while the Rockpile label comprises wines from its Rockpile-area vineyards. Lastly there’s a collection of four wines, Loam, Suther, Positas, and Clough, which are are designed to explore the impact of various soil types in Sonoma.
Many wines from across all of these brands are reviewed below in brief. If you find yourself on Dry Creek and passing this highly visible estate, it’s highly worthwhile to stop in here!
2017 Mauritson Sauvignon Blanc Dry Creek Valley – Classic tart grapefruit, lemon rind, and a hint of vanilla. B+ / $26
2017 Mauritson Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley – Quite cocoa heavy, a little peppery, with a raisin edge. A- / $37
2017 Mauritson Rose Rockpile – Rose of zinfandel; has that zinny punch, some earth and chocolate notes, dried berries on the back end. Bigger than most roses. B+ / $27
2016 Charlie Clay Pinot Noir Russian River Valley – A collaboration with chef Charlie Palmer, and a solid one; bold currant and cherry notes, chocolate, and some spice. Quite lush. A- / $55
2017 Rockpile Zinfandel Rockpile Ridge – Very peppery, big density, and quite intense chocolate and charcoal notes; touches of green herbs. B+ / $45
2016 Rockpile Zinfandel Jack’s Cabin Vineyard – Sweeter, more vanilla and caramel, some toasted marshmallow. B+ / $47
2012 Rockpile Zinfandel Uncle’s Block – Beginning to show austerity and age; quite intense fruit, lingering tobacco and light leather notes. A / $57
2012 Rockpile Syrah Madrone Spring Vineyard – Tannic and youthful, with dried fruit and ample earth, tobacco; some acidity to liven it up. B+ / $45
2015 Rockpile Cabernet Sauvignon Rockpile Ridge Vineyard – Fairly classic in style; chocolate and currants, with a slug of vanilla. B+ / $62
2015 Rockpile “Buck Pasture” Red Wine – 60% cabernet sauvignon, 20% malbec, 20% cabernet franc. A bit sweet, with lots of red fruit, vanilla, and chocolate. Lingering cherry notes on the back end. A- / $75
2015 Rockpile “Independence” Port – Made from real Port grapes; spicy with violet notes; heavy on the raisins. B+ / $45
2014 Loam Cabernet Sauvignon – Great intensity; cloves, charcoal, and spice; restrained vanilla. Supple and soothing. A / $85