Clay Mauritson, Owner and Winemaker at Mauritson Wines
CLAY MAURITSON, Winemaker
Background and Career Highlights
Have a comment or question for Clay? Send it to clay@mauritsonwines.com

EMMA KUDRITZKI,
Associate Winemaker


Winemaking may have been the logical evolution in our family’s long history of farming in the Dry Creek Valley, however, it took an absence from the valley and attention to those inner voices that led Clay Mauritson back to these same vineyards that he spent planting, tending and picking as a teen. What he came to realize was that he already had a lifetime of understanding about the subtleties and strengths of each micro-climate within the Dry Creek, Rockpile and Alexander Valleys. The only thing left was to DREAM BIG!

Clay is joined in the cellar by Assistant Winemaker Emma Kudritzki and our three Cellar Hands: Jesus Garcia, Pete Daunch, and Don Jaramillo who bring a cumulative 30 years of winery experience to our cellar. Together, our team has developed a winemaking process that focuses on small vineyard lot separation and fermentation — last year alone we ushered 68 different lots to maturity before the final blending. This gives us enormous flexibilty, enabling us to pinpoint that perfect Mauritson signature with every varietal, every vintage. Fermentation is typically open-top, punchdowns made by hand, native yeasts employed. The resulting wines might be best described as the perfect expression of each vineyard.

The term "getting your feet wet" takes on new meaning
as we employ traditional crushing practices
for our port-styled Independence wine.
With a little over 270 acres of estate vineyards, we are not only able to source the absolute best of each vintage, we are also able to meticulously follow our passions. For example, when we decided to create a wine in the true porto tradition, we planted four of the “big five” authentic Portuguese varietals then mixed in some Tannat, resulting in our signature “Independence,” a wine that refers to a section of our Rockpile property dating back six generations. As the photo at left shows, we choose winemaking techniques that will best exemplify the wine style and the vineyard. The fruit reigns supreme here...and as Clay often tells visitors to the winery "winemaking is 95% fruit and 5% the winemaker not screwing it up!"


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