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Stirm Wine Co. Cienega Valley Riesling Wirz Vineyard 2018


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This displays Riesling's magical ability to both be unctuous and rich while remaining bone dry and nervy. A lot of this has to do with the Wirz vineyard which has some of the oldest riesling as well as zinfandel vines in the state. This is fuller and deeper than the Kick-On with complex grapefruit and petrol notes. Dry but with fruit richness and lots of acidity. Mosel meets the Pacific.
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Since 2013 Ryan’s Stirm Wine Co. has been producing rieslings that are amongst the state's best. He does this by choosing extremely rugged vineyards, often with old vines that are dry farmed. Ryan, like everyone of our favorite winemakers, believes that the best wines are made in the vineyard and that is where you will usually find him.

He learned this vineyard first approach from his mentor, Justin Willett of Tyler Winery, where he worked for many years, as well as while working harvests abroad in Margaret River, Western Australia and in Austria's Wachau, with Weingut Tegernseerhof. It was there that he was bitten by the Riesling bug.

But it turns out that Riesling is a practical choice as well. It's drought-tolerant, buds late, has good heat tolerance, ripens late, has very high acidity, and has stylistic variation that few varieties can match. This allows him to produce wine as natural as possible with no synthetic chemicals in the vineyards and little intervention in the winery.

Some cuvées receive a tiny addition of sulfur. Ryan’s Rieslings are bright, fresh, complex and filled with mouthwatering acidity; hallmarks of the variety. Even when rich and unctuous, each cuvée floats on a lightning streak of mineral acidity. And while his winery is Riesling centric they make a handful of red wines that share that same vibrance. Even his Zinfandel is light and fresh with fruit that bounces on the palette.

We first encountered Ryan’s wines around the same time that he founded his winery. We've had the pleasure of watching his wines evolve. It was clear from this very first vintage that we were dealing with someone of unique talent with the potential to produce phenomenal wines. Over the last couple of vintages it’s become abundantly clear that this potential has been realized. He has helped usher the new age of California riesling and we can't wait to see what he does next.


  • Grape Variety


  • Vintage


  • Size


  • Farming Practice


  • Style

    Floral , Fruity , Minerally

  • Sweetness


  • Body

    Medium Bodied