Ten Years of Local Wines from Manton
Ten years ago, Indian Peak Vineyards started construction of the first bonded winery in the town of Manton, California, having the facility completed for the 2004 fall harvest. 2014 marks a decade of growing exceptional grapes and producing award winning wines in the small foothill community.
Indian Peak Vineyards is owned and operated by Fred and Donna Boots, who work countless hours together with family and friends to bring the connoisseurs of fine wines their new and exciting collection. The first Manton vineyards were planted in the mid 1970s by Jerry Dobson at about 2,500 ft. elevation, where Chardonnay and Syrah varieties survived best.
Indian Peak’s seven acre vineyard is at 2,200 ft. and slopes to the west. This 300 ft. lower elevation than Dobson Vineyard allows the Bordeaux varietals to fully ripen. The summertime temperatures can reach 100 plus degrees in the region, but as soon as the sun sets, the breeze from Mt. Lassen blows down and covers the vineyard in cooler air. This daily temperature swing allows these Bordeaux Varietals to develop wonderful complexities.
The rocky red volcanic soil adds a unique mineral taste that fans of the wines love and expect in a rich lineup of premium wines.
Fred is the company’s winemaker, and uses what he calls a “low input” style of winemaking. “Let the grapes and the terrier do the talking,” he remarks. All of their quality red wines are aged in a mixture of small French, American and Hungarian oak barrels for a minimum of 21 months. Reserve wines are aged for 33 months for a superior flavor.
Indian Peak’s business concept was shown to be correct with the release last year of their 2009 reserve wines. The 2009 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is one of their best selling wines, and priced at just $70.00 per bottle. Who would ever have thought that wine of this quality could be grown in the foothills of Eastern Tehama County?
As for the history of wine growing in the Manton community, Alger Vineyards had the first tasting room in 2003, followed by Indian Peak, Shasta Daisy, Ringtail, and Cedar Crest Vineyards. Now, on any given weekend visitors can inspect five wineries in a relaxing atmosphere of wine tasting and camaraderie. With the help of Mt. Lassen Park and the Monastery of St. John, the winery has visitors from Alaska to Uruguay, Sweden to South Africa, Montenegro to China, and these travelers are usually quite surprised at the high quality of wine offered in the village.
The ability of Manton to prosper as wine country has been made possible by all the hard work and attention to detail the growers of Indian Peak Vineyards place on quality. Without the Redding, Red Bluff and Chico wine enthusiasts discovering what a fun and exciting adventure they can have, the vineyard would never have survived.
Fred and Donna and their entire family are quick to express their gratitude for the support provided by the various communities of the region, and plan on providing the finest wines available for years to come.