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Taste The Altitude 2,742 feet above sea level

The Signal Ridge Vineyard was established in 1999. We were among the first to recognize the potential in the remote mountains of the Mendocino Ridge AVA, and that fact remains a testament to our relentless pursuit of excellence. Our name is derived from an abandoned fire watch tower that still adorns the estate's apex at 2,742 feet. Today, Signal Ridge is the highest-elevation vineyard in all of Mendocino, Sonoma, and Napa counties.

Pure, Relentless, Intention

We embrace the challenges of mountaintop farming as an opportunity to produce singular, expressive wines of exceptional quality, which is reflected in every bottle of wine we produce. Experience where passion meets perfection, and respect for our land is paramount. Escape to our mountain, come taste the altitude.

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The Signal Ridge Vineyard

The Essence of Signal Ridge Organically-grown and dry-farmed vines

Signal Ridge Vineyard resides at an elevation of 2,742 feet on weathered-in-place mountaintop soils nine miles from the Pacific Ocean. The site falls within the Mendocino Ridge AVA, a truly unique American viticultural area that encompasses a series of non-contiguous peaks all rising above 1,200 feet elevation. Our estate, perched on a ridgetop peak named Cold Spring Mountain, encompasses 100 acres with only 18 acres plantable to vines. 

Farming the sky

Intense steep slopes, tight spacing, and varied exposures create a diversity rarely seen in New World vineyards. The extreme nature of the site and cool, coastal climate demands intensive hand tending and intuitive farming practices. Our long commitment to organic, regenerative viticulture and dry farming has resulted in resilient, deeply rooted vines that weather the ever-changing climatic conditions with ease.

Clonal diversity 

Our winemaker, Joanna Wells, has scoured California's Grand Cru vineyards for Massale selections (cuttings of exceptional old vines) of California Heritage clone Chardonnay varieties. Our Chardonnay grapes are typically harvested in early September, followed by our Pinot Noir grapes a week or two later. Six clones of Pinot Noir were thoughtfully selected to best suit the fractured marine sediment soils and to create wines of depth and concentration. 

Roger and Joanna Sorting During Harvest

Attention to Detail Time-honored winemaking techniques

In the cellar we employ a gentle touch to allow for the ultimate expression of our estate. 

Grapes are carefully hand-picked, sorted, and placed in a combination of small, upright oak and concrete fermenters. The use of concrete and wood vessels promotes a slow and controlled fermentation that encourages the health of the native yeasts while also preserving natural acidity and enhancing mineral texture. 

Chardonnay grapes are fermented in neutral French barriques and concrete eggs, and the final aging is completed in stainless steel. 

Our Pinot Noir grapes consist of a mix of clones 2A, 115, 777, and Swan and are co-fermented with one-third whole clusters, which helps balance the site's inherent richness and adds to the finished wine's aromatic complexity. After fermentation is complete, the wine is transferred to neutral French oak barrique, where malolactic fermentation occurs naturally and at its own pace. The wine is then aged for 18 months before being bottled unfined with minimal effective SO2.

Liquid Artistry From grape to glass

Our Mendocino Ridge Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines exemplify the quality of our estate Signal Ridge Vineyard, and begin to define its legacy. We strive to craft beautifully fragrant, midweight wines with impeccable balance. 

Elements of Style 

Our own tastings of current and past vintages reveal beautifully consistent aromatic and flavor qualities that, in the Chardonnay, call to mind white floral notes nuanced by fresh herbs, with a balance of textural richness on the palate, fuelled by citrus and orchard fruit, all culminating with bright and racy acidity. 

In our Pinot Noir, we find a stunning mix of Moroccan spice, spearmint, and conifer, complemented by notes of pomegranate, blood orange, and sous bois (a French term that encompasses the fragrant undergrowth of a deep forest floor). Finely woven, rustic tannins and deep mineral intensity promise a long evolution in both the glass and the cellar.

Roger Scommegna

Roger Scommegna

“The Steward”

“When I first discovered the land that would become Signal Ridge Vineyard, I was captivated by this thought: That the interplay, or tension, between the bright Pacific sun and cooling maritime wind gusts at over 2,700 feet above the fogline, coupled with steep slopes of fractured sandstone and igneous ultramafic rock could make for grapevines that produce delicious wine with exceptional tension of its own. After years of farming in this extreme environment, I think we’ve done just that.” Prior to owning a vineyard, Roger enjoyed success in real estate and television. He co-founded realtor.com and, when it sold, set out to pursue his passion for wine. In 1999, he bought a mountaintop parcel and established Signal Ridge Vineyard. In the early Aughts, he partnered with Joel Gott and Charles Bieler on an import company named Three Thieves (the trio starred in a TV show for the Cooking Channel.) A world traveler and food aficionado, Roger loves returning home to Mendocino, where he is also a co-owner of the Boonville Hotel. Catch him there, and he'll pour you a glass from Signal Ridge.

Joanna Wells

Joanna Wells

“Vignerrone”

Joanna Wells began her winemaking career in Washington’s Walla Walla Valley before joining the renowned Robert Sinskey Vineyards in Napa, known for their pioneering Organic and Biodynamic Pinot Noir. As the Associate Winemaker for Kutch Wines in Sonoma, she crafted critically acclaimed, industry-leading Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. In 2013, Wells established her own project, Model Farm, focusing on single vineyard wines from compelling terroir in Sonoma and the Santa Cruz Mountains. In 2015, she was introduced to Signal Ridge Vineyard, and since then, she has dedicated herself to crafting wines from this extraordinary vineyard.

Nacho Flores

Nacho Flores

“El Granjero”

Born and raised as a farmer in Mexico, Nacho Flores counts himself lucky to have arrived in the United States at a young age—but even more fortunate to have found the perfect canvas for a generationally-honed farmer’s hand in Signal Ridge Vineyard. "Luck only goes so far. Hard work and dedication brought me to Signal Ridge, where I feel truly blessed to tend this special land, work with amazing folks, and create exceptional wines."

Decoding the Signal Ridge Crest