St. Ruth is the more delicate, curvaceous partner to our Hodder Hill. A red blend that changes with the season, the wine carries itself with patience, allowing its structure, character, and nuance to blossom later in the glass or after cellaring.

A nod to those that have come before us, St. Ruth is named for Stephen Clifton Lawson and his wife, Annie Susan Beaty (the S & T), who purchased this land in 1901 and was the first of our family to farm and live in this glen; and for their only child, Ruth Ardelia Lawson (the Ruth).

Vineyards

Located on a western slope of the northern Blue Ridge Mountains, between 1000 and 1400 feet above sea level. These plantings consist of 12.2 acres under vine, growing in deep, steep and well drained rocky soils. The vines are cane pruned and trained to both the Open Lyre and Double Guyot system. Learn more about our vineyard →

Vintages

Season

2012 was an excellent year for growing grapes in Virginia. It was reminiscent of the stellar 2009 vintage. Bud break occurred very early, around the last couple days of March. Flowering was also early, at the end of May. Summer temperatures were normal, with some hot days and some cool ones. Rainfall was rather low for most of the summer, turning very dry in August just before harvest. A couple of minor rain events occurred in late August and early September but after these rains past, the rest of harvest was beautifully dry, sunny and warm during the days and very cool and crisp during the night time hours. Harvest began in late September and lasted through the middle of October.

Winemaking

The grapes were hand harvested and chilled overnight. A triple sorting, (at picking in the vineyard, and on the crush pad, pre and post destemming) was performed and the berries were destemmed without crushing. The whole berries filled small one-ton fermenters and then cold soaked for 4 days. Moved into the fermentation room, the bins were warmed to 60ºF and inoculated with yeast. Fermentation temperatures reached into the mid-80s and lasted about 7 to 10 days with 2 cap punch downs each day. ML fermentation began in the bins after primary fermentation was complete. After additional maceration time of from two to three weeks, the wine was pressed off, allowed to settle overnight and then racked into new and older French oak barrels where ML fermentation completed. The wines rested for five months before this blend was assembled during the summer of 2013. This wine was bottled unfiltered and unfined in February 2014.

Varietals

57% Merlot, 29% Cabernet Franc, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon

Production

350 cases

Aging Potential

2014-2020

Season

2013 consisted of a troublesome growing season and a beautiful ripening and harvest season. The spring and early summer months were warm and wet resulting in the vines growing wildly and rapid. This, in turn, caused us to work long and rapidly just to keep up. But by mid-August and through October the rains ceased and the vines stopped growing and put their energies into ripening their fruit. There were no tropical systems in our area and we enjoyed many sunny and warm days and very cool crisp nights. Harvest began in late September and lasted through the middle of October.

Winemaking

The grapes were hand harvested and chilled overnight. A triple sorting, (at picking in the vineyard, and on the crush pad, pre and post destemming) was performed and the berries were destemmed without crushing. The whole berries filled small one-ton fermenters and then cold soaked for 4 days. Moved into the fermentation room, the bins were warmed to 60ºF and inoculated with yeast. Fermentation temperatures reached into the mid-80s and lasted about 7 to 10 days with two cap punch downs each day. ML fermentation began in the bins after primary fermentation was complete. After additional maceration time of from two to three weeks, the wine was pressed off, allowed to settle overnight and then racked into new and older French oak barrels where ML fermentation completed. The wines rested for five months before this blend was assembled during the summer of 2014. This wine was bottled unfiltered and unfined in July 2015.

Varietals

46% Merlot, 46% Cabernet Franc, 8% Petit Verdot

Production

350 cases

Aging Potential

2015-2030


This list includes previous vintages up to the present. See which wines are currently available →