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Ancient Peaks
 
April 30, 2013 | Vineyard | Ancient Peaks

Not Your Typical Fossil Fuel

At our estate Margarita Vineyard, we have reduced our fossil fuel consumption through sustainable winegrowing  practices. But ironically enough, the vineyard is becoming renowned for its fossil-fueled wines. Let us explain...

In a section of Margarita Vineyard called Oyster Ridge, the soil is composed of compacted layers of ancient oyster fossils. Here, the fossils are literally spilling out of the ground, testifying to the land’s origins as an uplifted sea bed (some of these fossils are enormous, such as the one pictured here). The result, in the words of Wine & Spirits Magazine, is “perhaps the most dramatically calcareous chunks of earth in the entire state.”

Why does this matter? Because calcium-rich soil is coveted by winemakers worldwide. At Margarita Vineyard, this translates to fruit with high-toned flavors, fine structure and pretty aromatics.

This ancient sea bed is actually one of five soil zones at Margarita Vineyard. Few vineyards boast such a spectrum of geological diversity. This diversity enables us to grow the same varietals in a range of soils, ultimately enhancing the complexity, texture and dimension of the resulting wines.  

All five soil types play a role in our wines—but the ancient sea bed is by far the most rare and dramatic. Come out for one of our Saturday vineyard tours to see it for yourself.

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