Youtube users can sneak
preview new reality TV series that asks the question -- who wants to be
a wine maker?
Ridge and Harmony Hill featured on the nationally-syndicated PBS TV
show, America's Heartland, Series 3, episode 311.
featured in January Cincinnati Magazine, the Wine Issue.
Photos by John Johnston,
Available on line at
http://www.cincinnatimagazine.com. The January
password is WINE or
Winery is quickly gaining a reputation as one of the finest
estate-bottlers this side of the Mississippi, winning a rare
double-gold medal in the 2006 American Wine Society Competition for
their 2004 cabernet franc. In 1998, after 10 years of growing pinot
noir at the Chehalem Valley Vineyards in Yamhill, Oregon,
60-year-old Ron Barrett, along with his partner Nancy Bentley,
relocated to Ohio to start their own vineyard. Regional soil maps,
Barrett says, revealed this land's ideal composition: 30 inches of
neutral to slightly base soil, underlain by hundreds of feet of
broken limestone. "World class grape soil," he says. Spend some time
on this 126-acre farm with its immaculate vinifera grape vines --
cabernets, viogniers, and rieslings, petit verdot and syrah,
roussanne and sauvignon blancs -- and you gain an almost romantic
appreciation of the viticulture lifestyle. Which is a mistake. "I
would never call it romantic," Bentley says. "You never see all of
the problems that occur, all of the weather disasters around the
corner." And the work: Each of these 5,000 vines is hand-pruned from
30 shoots down to two or three. And then there's the
around-the-clock "punchdowns" to stir the wines, and the hand
bottling, corking, and labeling. Still, among the purveyors of his
wine, Ron Barrett is a rock star. As someone who can just as easily
discuss the prehistory of southern Ohio as the merits of pairing a
premium Viognier-Roussanne blend with goat cheese, people seek his
knowledge and company. A recent case of his wine sold for twice its
value after he autographed the box. "I call it 'the gene, " Bentley
says. "People call and say they want to start a vineyard", and I say
"We'll have to see if you have the gene." For people like Ron, it's
in their blood. They have to do it. But it's an extreme amount of
work." --Brent Donaldson
first whiff nearly knocked me off my feet. I was standing on a
rickety metal ladder leaning against one of the large fermentation
vats in the space -- really not much more than an oversized garage
-- where Ron Barrett makes his wine....
read more from editor Jay
A review of the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon (sold out at the winery) was
posted on 12/24/07 on Mark Squires Bulletin Board, on
erobertparker.com. For those of you who still have it in your
cellars, you may find this interesting.
Greg, NYC: 2004 Kinkead
Cab Sauv, Ohio River – "What to say about
this wine that Loren brought. I was simply floored. If you are not going
to expect much in the way of wine from a state, that state has to be Ohio.
Or so I thought.
The wine was stunning, partly because my expectations were so low and even
more because it was so damn good. That was a real cab. The nose
demonstrated the expected varietal cassis and herbal qualities, the palate
had the tart black fruit, a touch of herbs, some tobacco, a bit of wood
that hasn't yet integrated fully – in short, just a wonderful young cab.
And seventeen bucks. I'm trying to think of a cab from California that
delivers at the same level for the price. Perhaps Beckmen? BV Rutherford?
I'd like to try this blind with some of those. This was just a wonderful
surprise from Ohio."
Ridge 2004 Cabernet Franc rated one of the Top 100
Exciting Wine Finds, international list compiled by Tom
Stevenson, British editor of the New Sothebys Wine Encyclopedia and
publisher of the paperback Wine Report 2008. "Succulent, intensely
flavored fruit, ripe, supple tannins, and a truckload of flavors--from
cherries, cassis, chocolate, and cream, to vanilla and coconut."--Sandra
Silfven, Atlantic Northeast editor of the 2008 Wine Report "This shows
what promise there is in Ohio." --Tom Stevenson
Kinkead Ridge Winery accomplishments, 2002-2007
2003 Viognier/Roussanne named one of the Top 100
Exciting Wines in the World, Tom Stevenson, British editor of the
New Sothebys Wine Encyclopedia
2004 Cabernet Franc named one of the Top 100
Exciting Wines in the World, Tom Stevenson, British editor of the
New Sothebys Wine Encyclopedia. Only 12 American wineries made the
2004 Cabernet Franc, Double Gold Medal, American
Wine Society competition. 1000+ international entries, only 2 Double
2004 Cabernet Sauvignon, Gold Medal Finger Lakes
Wine competition. The only vinifera wine from Ohio to win a gold
medal. Only 15 were awarded internationally for Cabernet
Featured on nationally-syndicated PBS TV program,
Featured on Ohio-syndicated PBS TV program, Our
Kinkead Ridge video “The Romance of the Vineyard”
one of five finalists in the Wine Spectator video contest
Kinkead Ridge featured on the cover of Ohio
Kinkead Ridge listed in Kevin Zraly's American Wine
Guide (former sommelier of Windows on the World, World Trade Center)
Ridge wines praised by Bernard Portet (founding winemaker of Clos du
Val) and Melyvn Masters (restauranteur, author)
Ridge mentored the
winegrowers of Harmony Hill, Meranda and LaVigna
Kinkead Ridge wines featured on the Dish TV show,
with Chef Jean Robert de Cavel
Kinkead Ridge featured in Ladies Home Journal and
Country Living (courtesy of the Farm Bureau)
Kinkead Ridge 2006 Viognier/Roussanne rated one of
the top 2007 favorite wines, the WineBuzz magazine and wins Gold
Medal at the American Wine Society competition.
Kinkead Ridge featured in Ohio Wine Country
Kinkead Ridge featured in From Garden Gate to
Dinner Plate, Food and Farms of Ohio
Kinkead Ridge featured in national magazine, Wines
Kinkead Ridge wines reviewed by Mark Fisher, Dayton Wine Blog
Kinkead Ridge wines reviewed by Jon Christenson, Columbus
Kinkead Ridge 2005 Cabernet Franc featured
currently at Pigalls and JeanRo Bistro
Kinkead Ridge wines featured by Chef Julie Frances,
Ohio wine dinners, Kinkead Ridge featured at
Rhapsody, Sturkeys, Daveeds, Bexleys Monk, Lindeys German Village,
Iron Horse Inn
Kinkead Ridge wines reviewed by Lenn Thompson, New
York wine writer
Kinkead Ridge wines reviewed by Sandra Silfven,
Detroit Daily News
Kinkead Ridge newspaper articles, too numerous to
Kinkead Ridge wine poured at the Smithsonian
Institute, Washington D.C. and by Senator Voinovich
Kinkead Ridge the only non-distributor winery to
pour at Gourmet Sensation
Kinkead Ridge invited to pour at Fleur de Fetes,
One of four wineries (and the only Ohio winery) featured in the
January Cincinnati Magazine
We visited the big winery trade show in Sacramento,
Unified Symposium; had lunch with our old friend Dick Erath, who was
gracious enough to let us visit his new vineyard and home in Wilcox
Arizona. We woke up to a view of a winter vineyard, mountains in the
background and sand cranes flying overhead. Then we spent four days in
New Mexico and Arizona with Brad and Armanda of LaVigna (www.lavignawines.com).
Ron was excited that the price of a screw cap machine has dropped in
half from two years ago, around $17,000 to $8,000.
Kinkead Ridge featured in the
Realizing the Fruits of Their Labors.
Unfortunately, due to the
Direct Shipping legislation passed in Ohio, we will no longer ship
direct to consumers. The law states a consumer may only receive 24 cases
of wine per year. The state is collecting data from wineries and
shipping companies with regard to who received wine. We would have no
way of knowing if we shipped the 25th case illegally.
Click here to read what the press says about
this legislation. For alternatives to shipping, please
We are often asked about
food and wine pairings. This is a great site to browse, Natalie
Ridge is listed in the short "well-known wineries" section in the Ohio
section of Kevin Zraly's 2008 Wines of America.
I fished around in the
cellar tonight and opened a 2004 Syrah. It was absolutely wonderful.
Look at this photo... Travel Magazine has a
contest called "Where Are You"...what do you think about this photo?
a) Sunrise over Mt. Hood, Oregon
b) Sunrise over the great pyramids, Egypt
c) Sunrise over Kinkead Ridge Vineyard, the front barn
If you guessed "c", you're right!
Photo by John Johnston
Here's the same photo during the day:
"Why go for those long distance relationships when you can find
love in your own back yard."
Savarin noted two features which distinguish man from beast:
1. Fear of the future.
2. Desire for fermented liquors.