Dubbed "Brutal Hill" by those who have worked with us in the vineyard, the land the founders chose was slightly to moderately steep and at 1600 feet, normally above fog line. the mountains and ocean combine to provide the right combination of warm days with cool nights. The soils are well-drained with sandy and clay loam on top of crumbling shale from an ancient seabed.
For optimum vine health and grape quality, we train the vines using the Vertical Positioning System (VSP) and both spur and cane pruning. We work the vines by hand and during the growing season we spend time with each vine to remove excess growth and leaves to allow for air flow and a dappling of sun on the grapes. We don't subscribe to hedging and any mechanical methods of pruning or picking.
We amend the soils based on testing and allow the nutrients 3 years to get down to the root zone between tests. Wine grapes benefit from lots of calcium for a high pH, so we add about 2 tons per acre of ground up oyster shell every three years.
Between rows we keep nature in play and allow native ground cover to form to allow for a natural balance that precludes the need to spray for harmful insects. The vines have been trained for deep roots and we use no irrigation.
Noble Hill History
The vineyard's "moments in the limelight" include an article by a wine writer back in Chicago in the late Eighties. He was present for a presentation of the wines at nearby Ridge winery. The organizer did Noble Hill the great honor of being the Chardonnay poured for guests as they arrived and waited for the main event. The writer was impressed enough to devote a paragraph talking about this new "up and coming" winery that could compete with the best!