Hundred Acre Winery is a relatively new (cult) domain, only established in 2000 by the flamboyant winemaker Jayson Woodbridge from Canada in St. Helena (Napa Valley, California). A specialist "pur sang" who produces high quality wines from principally Cabernet Sauvignon grapes.
Jayson Woodbridge, a former investment banker, bought his first vineyard in the 1990s. He now has three different vineyards in use. The first plot he bought was “Kayli Morgan” (3.6 ha) in Howell Mountain. This 100% Cabernet Sauvignon saw his debut in in 2000. The name "Hundred Acre" is derived from the "Hundred Acre Wood", where Winnie the Pooh and his friends were living. This is what Jayson’s kids called the forest they used to play in. That forest has now become a vineyard, but by naming the wine after it, his children still get to enjoy Hundred Acre.
Futher acquisitions were the “Ark Vineyard” (6 ha) and “Few and Far Between” of just 2 ha. The latter is located just above the historic Eisele Vineyard at Calistoga. His approach to winemaking has always been very serious. The vineyards are in excellent condition, and they are equipped with a special misting system. This method is copied from the Dutch tulip industry. The mist prolongs the growing season so that the grapes can ripen optimally. Only one bunch is harvested per vine, which requires intensive pruning and produces extremely low yields. The harvest takes at least five different picking rounds. All grapes are selected and sorted by hand.
A portion of the three vineyards is fermented separately and put in barrels. These wines are then blended and marketed under the name Wraith. Once in a while, a barrel turns out to be so special that an extra cuvée is issued. One of these extra cuvées is the Dark Ark cuvée. This cuvée was issued beside the regular Ark Vineyard, but not every year. Jayson uses new French oak barrels to mature his wines. This takes at least 24 months, and with some cuvées up to 42 months! The cellar is equipped with a unique filter system. The filter was formerly used by a NASA space station and feature, among other things, UV light rods that can remove even the smallest micro-organisms from the air.
In 2004, he started a new project in the Barossa Valley (Australia) to make exceptional wines from the Shiraz grape. This project is called Ancient Way.
Unfortunately, it's not easy to get a few bottles of Hundred Acre wine, unless you're on the mailing list. Moreover, Hundred Acre has been awarded 100 points by Robert Parker 25 times, so the wines are in increasingly high demand. Luckily, you can get these wines through selected retailers such as Best of Wines.Read more