It is the goal of Bernardus to create a wine that will rival the finest from Bordeaux. This wine will be subtly balanced with complexity and proportion, rather than varietal character or intensity, To achieve this dream,Marinus vineyard was planted in 1990 in the upper Carnel Valley, Situated on 210 stunning acres are planted to Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
The Marinus vineyard is planted to 15 diverse blending blocks, each one contributing distinct flavour profiles. The blocks are identified by terroir and planting philosophies to create unique phenolics for blending. The vineyard embraces two distinct yet interrelated philosophies, both of which are critical to the evolution of quality grapes through controlling vigor. Close vine spacing at Marinus is adjusted to the varying soil potential for each site or block. The average vine density is three times what is typical in California. Clusters are thinned when necessary to further manage the yields per vine. The average yield is one-half the typical amount for these varities. This reduced vigor enables the fruit from each vine to fully develop its characteristics, which yields a more complex wine. In addition to the meticulous planting of the vineyard.
The vineyard manager further achieves vigor management through early water deficit. By restricting irrigation in the early stages of the vine, it is manipulated into performing under drought conditions. This forces the vine to put all its energy into fruit development, not in the vegetative canopy. Controlling vigor results in smaller berries which have a higher juice to skin ratio, creating more concentrated flavour.