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Ryme Vare Vineyard Ribolla Gialla 2013
Ryan and Megan started Ryme Cellars in 2007 with one ton of Aglianico. Excited by the intensity and complexity of this wine, they embarked on producing intriguing wines of varieties that they personally enjoy. To date they make two Vermentinos, Ribolla Gialla, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Aglianico under Ryme. In 2011, Ryan and Megan wanted to expand their production to include some great Sonoma County vineyards that produce the type of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that they love to drink. For this task, they created a new label called Verse Wines, as a compliment to the more esoteric Ryme portfolio. With Ryme & Verse, Ryan and Megan aspire to make honest and expressive wines that exhibit the characteristics of the variety and place from which it came.
As one of Napa’s coolest sub-appellations, the area begs for diversity among its vineyards. Merlot and Chardonnay firmly compete with Cabernet Sauvignon for a place here. Some of Napa’s best Zinfandels also come from the Oak Knoll District.
Situated far in Napa’s southern end, Oak Knoll receives a strong cooling influence from both the San Pablo Bay and the Pacific Coast’s evening fog and breezes. Summer days are warm but on average ten degrees cooler than in St. Helena; summer nights are chilly. A long growing season promotes for leisurely ripening of grape berries, resulting in an impressive balance of sugars, phenols and acidity in resulting wines.
Notable producers are Trefethen, one of the appellation’s oldest wineries, Robert Biale, legendary Zinfandel producer and Lewis Cellars, a family-run, hands-on establishment.
Beyond the usual suspects, there are hundreds of white grape varieties grown throughout the world. Some are indigenous specialties capable of producing excellent single varietal wines, while others are better suited for use as blending grapes. Each has its own distinct viticultural characteristics, as well as aroma and flavor profiles, offering much to be discovered by the curious wine lover. In particular, Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece are known for having a multitude of unique varieties but they can really be found in any region.