Vineyard Blocks

Apple Block

Planted to: Cabernet Sauvignon Clone 337 Rootstock 10114
Soil Type: Pleasanton Loam with veins of Riverwash

When the vineyard was developed, Gabrielle insisted on saving the heritage apple tree. She strongly believes in bio-diversity of the vineyard environment. It still produces delicious apples and is a beautiful accent to the adjoining vineyard.

The Apple Block has more gravely veins due to its proximity to Dry Creek. Fine gravel continuously washes to the surface and its soil does not have great moisture retention. Those qualities create very concentrated fruit that resulting in a richly textured wine. When visiting the vineyard, guests observe that the canes are much smaller in diameter than the Olive Block only 15 feet across the driveway- a result of less rich soil, less water available to the roots and challenging navigation through dense layers of river cobble. The Apple Block is managed to lower fruit load to not overstress the vines and extract maximum flavors. This vineyard ripens 7-10 days weeks later than the neighboring Olive Block, so hand harvesting is done in phases, each determined by the block’s ripening schedule dictated by its unique soil structure.

Olive Block

Planted to: Cabernet Sauvignon Clone 337, Rootstock 10114
Soil Type: Pleasanton Loam

Historic Mission olive trees are the namesake of the Olive Block. Gabrielle propagated the trees from the last known original Mission Olive Grove (1797) located near Santa Barbara, California, that she discovered while researching California olive history for her book, The Ultimate Guide to American Olive Oil.

The canes of the vines in the Olive Block are almost double the size of the Apple block, as the alluvial soil is richer with more water retention. Located at the base of Mt Veeder, its soil eroded and created this loam structure. In average rainfall years, no irrigation is required by the vines to remain vigorous. The vines like to carry more fruit and be harvested earlier. It produces a wine that is sensuous and mouth filling.

French Gate Block

Soil Type: Haire Loam & Pleasanton Loam with veins of Riverwash
Planted to: Cabernet Sauvignon Clone 337, Rootstock 10114
Petite Verdot Clone ENTAV 400 Rootstock 420A

An elegant antique French Gate opens to reveal a complex vineyard. A result of a mix of gravel from long gone small streams, volcanic sub-soil structure and layer of loam, these vines must be treated as individuals- a specialized drip system imparts water only to some. The vines are fertilized with compost in accordance to their requirements. They are pampered! The end result is a firmly structured wine with beautifully complex flavors.

Creek Block

Planted to: Cabernet Sauvignon Clone 11 & 7 Rootstock 10114
Soil Type: Riverwash

Dry Creek winds around this block and still floods about every 10 years. Since the vines are dormant during the rainy season, this does not impact them. But it is a big cleanup job! As a teen, Preston O’Connell dug a 15’ deep trench to build a fort in the middle of what was then a field of grass and wild flowers. He uncovered a finely structured layer cake of alternating 1-3” deep layers of loam, sand and gravel. The history of the soil determined the clones and rootstock ideally suited to these conditions and subsequent vineyard management practices.

Petit Verdot Block

Planted to: Petite Verdot Clone ENTAV 400 Rootstock 420A
Soil Type: Pleasanton Loam

Along a lane of 200’ tall Eucalyptus trees and a field of lavender, tightly spaced Petite Verdot grows. It is a small lot production that is a powerful component of the exclusive OCFV CABERNET SAUVIGNON ESTATE GROWN.

White Garden Block

Planted to: Cabernet Franc Clone ENTAV 623 Rootstock 420A Rootstock
Soil Type: Pleasanton Loam

Planted in 2014, just above the Creek Block, are select rows of Cabernet Franc, a key component in the Gabrielle Limited Cask 321 and the future ELLE Meritage. The block was anxious to start producing fruit so we had a small crop in 2015.

Barn Block

Planted to: Petit Verdot & Carménère
Soil Type: Pleasanton Loam

Adjacent to the family orchard is the block of Petit Verdot & Carménère planted in 2011. The rich texture of Carménère adds depth to the mid palate, while Petit Verdot adds structure and a deep garnet color.