Ian Brand is the winemaker to watch in the Monterey-Central Coast region, and is very deserving of the recognition awarded him for being named 2018 “Winemaker of the Year” by Esther Mobley, SF Chronicle Wine Editor. The La Marea label is Ian’s nod to Spanish varietals like Grenache (Garnacha), Monastrell (Mourvedre) Albariño. Ian is passionate about finding obscure vineyard sites growing these varietals in San Benito and Salinas Valley, especially where sustainable farming is practiced, and limestone-calcareous soils are prevalent. Here is a prime example of his excellent sourcing and wine producing skills; one of the most minerally expressive, fresh and vibrant, Rias Baixas-like Albariño ever produced domestically…..
The Kristy Vineyard grows on the western bench over the Salinas River on the broken sediment of ancient sea beds where it is exposed to the consistent cooling winds off the Monterey Bay. Kristy is a special because Albariño in the vineyard reaches full phenological ripeness at low potential alcohol and bright natural acidity later in the season. Usually picked between 20-22 Brix with a sub 3 PH and nearly 9 g/L TA. Whole cluster pressed and cold fermented to preserve aromatics and freshness. Secondary fermentation is arrested.