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  • Writer's pictureElkhorn Peak Cellars

The Elkhorn Peak Philosophy

Elkhorn Peak Cellars is family-owned and operated, producing less than 1,000 cases of wine a year. We share our wine with our wine club members and make limited quantities available through our website. We have no plans to go big; the emphasis is on keeping Elkhorn Peak a small, family business, focused on growing and making limited production, ultra-premium Napa Valley wines.

Our fruit and our wine continue to be one of Napa's best kept secrets.

Field Philosophy

As growers, we concentrate on healthy vine development over high yield crops. The delicate vineyard tasks of pruning, canopy management and harvesting are all done by hand - never machines. Our goal is to establish well-developed vines that will produce fruit of the highest quality on a consistent basis. With production levels at two tons per acre, the focus is on quality over quantity - always.

Pinot Noir Winemaking Philosophy

When it comes to the wine, our winemaking philosophy is minimal intervention.

After harvest, the grapes are delivered to the winery, destemmed, and then begin a 14-day fermentation on skin and seeds. During fermentation temperatures and sugars are checked 3 times a day, and we slowly raise the temperature from the initial 40 degrees to turn sugar into alcohol. Wine is fermented until dry. Next, free-run juice goes into tank, and grape skins go directly to the press for an hour cycle. The juice is pumped into neutral French Oak barrels. Over a 12-month aging period, wine is racked off the lees three times before blending and bottling.

No added flavors or artificial colors are added to our wine. The ingredients in the bottle are 100% estate grown Pinot Noir grapes.

Pinot Noir is our flagship wine, but we also make a small amount of Chardonnay, Rose, Dessert Wine and Sparkling wine. To shop all of our wines, click here.

The Nerlove family, at the Elkhorn Peak ranch.
The Nerlove family, at the Elkhorn Peak ranch.

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