Caraccioli Cellars celebrates the quality of Santa Lucia Highlands by highlighting the varietals. Our fruit centered wines showcase the high caliber of the estate vineyard. Our light-handed techniques allow the essential flavors of the fruit to boldly shine through the wine, leading to subtle variation from year to year. Wines begin in the vineyard where grapes are hand harvested and placed into small bins under the meticulous supervision of Scott Caraccioli. By not using larger bins we limit incidental stress and pressure on the grapes, thereby preventing premature crush. These labor-intensive procedures ensure the rich expression of full fruit flavors while eliminating any undesirable notes. The boutique nature of Caraccioli Cellars enables us to use barrel fermentation for not only the still wines, but also the sparkling lineup. Our use of the finest French oak allows us to round the edges and integrate the flavor profile to ultimately deliver a distinctly smooth and supple wine.
We take pride in elevating conventional standards to the next level in our sparkling production. To accomplish this goal, our process for sparkling wines follows particular procedures stemming from traditional French law, but adapted and modernized by our founding winemaker Michel Salgues. In addition, we have all the necessary equipment in our winery and control the process fully: from grapes, through tirage and finally to release. Champagne houses in France by law must use the first 150 of the 180 gallons of juice extracted from each ton. Caraccioli Cellars raises the bar on this regulation as we only use the first 120 gallons per ton. This provides the best “heart” juice from each grape and allows our wines to shine in their purity. Each secondary fermentation lasts nearly four years with an additional year of aging under cork for a proper marriage between the cuvée and dosage. Our processes are constantly being perfected by our winemaking team, ensuring the Caraccioli sparkling wines are smooth and cultivated.
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