From the moment we saw Justi Creek Ranch, we knew that we were home. The site is rich in history; it has played host to winemaking since the late 1800s. Recently, the Heritage Blocks were added to our estate, reuniting lands that had once been part of the Los Guilicos Rancho. This land includes a rare gem, an old vine Zinfandel block planted in 1919. This block is a classic field blend vineyard. The name, L'Ame du Sage, is a French phrase for soul of the wise man, paying homage to the century-old vines that distinguish this wine. We have taken the fruit from these ancient, low yielding vines and handcrafted a classically structured, completely delicious wine. With luscious raspberry and blackberry flavors entwined with black pepper and spice, it is a wine that will not soon be forgotten. These vines have weathered the passage of time, yielding a wine of depth and richness, and perhaps a touch of wisdom.
Our estate in Sonoma Valley is rich in historical significance, encompassing organically farmed vineyards and an eco-friendly winery. Justi Creek Vineyards, part of the stunning 95-acre ranch on the outskirts of Glen Ellen, is comprised of three adjacent parcels, formerly parts of Rancho Vallejo and Rancho Los Guilicos. Nancy and John Lasseter embarked on an environmentally sensitive upgrading of their property, lovingly restoring the natural habitat and converting the vineyards exclusively to organic farming practices. The pond was revitalized, and beehives and insectaries were established to provide homes for beneficial insects. The ecosystem flourishes under the watchful eye of vineyard manager Phil Coturri. The Heritage Blocks, ten acres just west of the winery, are the warmest location on the estate. The heart of the Heritage Blocks is a century old Zinfandel block, a classic field blend that includes eight other varieties: Cabernet Franc, Alicante Bouschet, Petite Sirah, Grand Noir de Calmette, Peloursin, Lenoir, Merlot, and Mourvédre.The remainder of the Heritage Blocks has been redeveloped using heirloom clonal selections of Grenache, Mourvédre and Counoise from our own and neighboring old vine vineyards.These new plantings are traditional goblet style (head pruned) with one-and-a-half horse avenues. We consider it a privilege to be stewards of old vines, which are a treasure in the rich heritage of Sonoma Valley.
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