Peterson Winery

2001 Bradford Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon

Cabernet Sauvignon •Bradford Mountain Vineyard

California: Sonoma County: Dry Creek Valley

Offer Expired:Jun 23, 2009 at 11:59 pm
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What We Say


Today’s wine comes from deep within the archives of Peterson Winery. Today only, they allowed us exclusive access to their exceptional ’01 Bradford Mountain Cab. This could be your final chance to taste this great bottle-aged wine


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Mission Codename: Don’t Manipulate Me

Operative: Agent White

Objective: Secure a delicious Cabernet from our friends at Dry Creek’s Peterson Winery

Mission Status: Accomplished!

Current Winery: Peterson Winery

Wine Subject: 2001 Bradford Mountain Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker: Jamie Peterson


Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley is a treasure trove of great wines. While The Wine Spies have been trying to keep from acquiring too many wines from the region when the wines are great, why not? Today’s selection is from the Bradford Mountain Vineyard which is located ont he western edge of DCV and its higher elevation and unique soil composition most influencing the grapes grown there. This wine is 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc, and 8% Petite Verdot.

Wine Spies Tasting Profile:

Look – Dark purple and almost inky in its blackish core that is highlighted by garnet and ruby reflexes when held to the light. Ruby with slight orange/brick hues along the edges and when swirled, slow widely spaced chubby legs descend at varying speeds down the side of the glass.

Smell – Medium bold in intensity, with earthy and smokey ripe and juicy dark black berry fruit and a touch of ripe plum are layered over classic green bell pepper, licorice, toasted vanilla oak and a hint of black pepper.

Feel – Rich and smooth in its attack, this dry, full-bodied wine has finely etched and ever so slightly grippy tannins, balanced acidity, good minerality, and a hint of spice that carries this wine’s classic Cab flavors through to the finish.

Taste – Bold but well balanced flavors of smokey and earthy dark black fruit, dense blackberry and ripe plum over a complex blend of herbal licorice, exotic spice, toasted oak, fresh cut earthy cedar and vanilla hints.

Finish – Clean and lingering dark fruit supported by this wines solid but smooth structure invite sip after sip.

Conclusion – The 2001 Peterson Winery Bradford Mountain Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is a delicious example of why The Wine Spies love Dry Creek Valley so much. Rich and balanced, with classic and complex Cabernet aromas and flavors, a smooth but solid structure, this wine stands up with out overpowering you. Decant this wine or give it at least 30 minutes to fully reveal its depth and character. The 2001 vintage in Sonoma was rated very well and this wine is just starting to show its full potential.

Mission Report:

Learn how Agent Red first became aware of Peterson Winery, which is now a Wine Spies favorite in the Dry Creek Valley – in this mission recap:

Today’s wine was one of those happened upon discoveries. You know, the sort that you find almost by accident.

I was making a pickup at one of my dead-drops in the Dry Creek Valley. A local asset had left me samples to consider for a future mission. When I got to the spot, I found a small parcel, obviously not large enough to contain wine. I grabbed it and walked toward my car, all the while making certain that I was not being followed.

On opening the parcel, I found a hand-written note inside:

This location compromised. Proceed to [REDACTED] for the package.

I entered the coordinates into my GPS and made my way to the new drop. On arrival, I scanned the area. Not a person in sight. I proceeded on foot and retrieved the package. It was then that I noticed what appeared to be a a winery across the valley.

Sample bottles safely stowed, I decided to investigate.

“Peterson Winery” read the sign on the building. My pulse quickened. Peterson was a name that had come up a few times recently. I had meant to place them under proper surveillance, but had not had the time to schedule a mission. I got out of the car for a closer look.

I scanned the area, making note of all point of ingress and egress. A good spy should be able to make a quick getaway if needed.

“Are you here to taste some wines today?”

I spun around to see a young man, perhaps in his 20’s. I played along.

“Sure,” I said.

And so the tasting began. We tasted through the range of the wines, and when we got to the fabulous Shinbone, I made the decision – right then and there – to reveal myself and procure the wine for our Operatives.

“Listen,” I said. “I can get this on the calendar next week. Can you move that fast?”

The young man, who turned out to be Jamie Peterson, the winemaker and son of founder/owner Fred Peterson, quickly agreed to allow us access to the wine.

I left with samples, and flash forward two days to the present… Viola! This excellent and very exciting wine is available to you today, dear Operative. If you love big, expressive, juicy, delicious and robust wines, this one is certain to please.

Wine Spies Winery Check:

The location of the Peterson Winery can be seen in this satellite photo.

What the Winery Says

About This Wine:

The grapes from the 2001 growing season produced a classic Bradford Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon. Smokey cedar and fresh-crush berry aromas mingle with essence of vanilla and minerals. Rich and smooth yet intense and powerful, this wine offers flavors of sweet cedar, spicy cherries and blackberries. The signature mineral quality of the Bradford Mountain soil is woven in the character of the wine, marrying the luscious flavors together. With an elegant finish, this wine embodies classic finesse and style.

Fred’s Vintaged View: This is our most terroir-driven wine—a Peterson wine that shouts out its origins with every sip. The Bradford Mountain vineyards produce wine grapes with a unique and very recognizable minerality, and that expression of place reaches its apex in the Bradford Mountain Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. The intensity of the Cabernet Sauvignon is complemented with fleshy fruit and wonderful aromatics from Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Merlot to create a wine that offers layer upon layer of flavors and aromas. Though big and bold, this is still a wine with balance and finesse. It is not one of those over-oaked, over-extracted and high-alcohol creations that are currently the rage with wine critics, yet have no place on the table, nor the potential for successful bottle aging. This is a wine that will definitely benefit from both bottle age and/or decanting to allow the wine to open and reveal all of its depth and complexity.

About The Vineyard:

Bradford Mountain Vineyard – Planted in the 1980s on the western edge of Dry Creek Valley, our Bradford Mountain Estate Vineyard is 32 acres on the very top of the mountain (elevation 1000 feet). We took great pains to fnd the proper varietals and clones to plant in the mineral-rich mountain soil. The well-drained, red-clay soil, combined with sunny days and cool nights, produces small, intensely favored Cabernet grapes with a higher acidity and a lower pH than valley fruit. These grapes are picked at a higher brix (sugar level) to achieve the perfect balance for exceptional wines.

About Peterson Winery:

We are located in the Dry Creek Valley, in the northwest region of Sonoma County. Peterson Winery’s new tasting room is now open for wine tasting and sales daily 11am-4:30pm. We often pour our wines at local tasting and charity events as well. Check for upcoming events on the News & Events page.

Our wines are also available for tasting at the “LOCALS” tasting room in Geyserville. See for directions and details. Click on the “Find Us” link for a map to the winery and to LOCALS in Geyserville.

If you have any questions about Peterson Winery or our wines, send us an e-mail at and we’ll respond as soon as we can.

We can’t tell our whole story here, but we hope that by looking at a few photos and reading a bit more about us, you’ll find out who we are and why we love to make great wines.

About The Winemaker:

Jamie Peterson – It’s not by coincidence that I’m the winemaker at Peterson Winery. I’ve been helping my father at the winery for the past ten years, back to the days of labeling the bottles by hand. I worked two harvests here at the winery, in 2000 and 2001, and the 2001 harvests Down Under in Australia at Lowe Family Winery, and then in New Zealand, at Ngatarawa Winery. With this solid base of experience, much to my excitement I was given the opportunity of taking over winemaking duties in June 2002, and have been loving it ever since.

Overseeing the quality of the wine from when the grapes come in all the way through to the bottle is my main responsibility and priority. Since it’s just my father and I, this keeps me pretty busy, but when I’m not checking up on barrels or wrestling with the bottling equipment, you can often find me at one the numerous tasting events we attend, whether it is for charity or for the love of wine. In my free time, I’ve started a Peterson Winery softball team with my friends here in Healdsburg. I also enjoy cooking, foraging for local culinary mushrooms, reading, and am a Giants baseball fan. Continuing winemaking tradition of Zero Manipulation.

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