Cantiga Wineworks is a small, family operated winery located in the tiny appellation in the scenic Sierra Nevada foothills of Fair Play, California
Rich and Christine Rorden chose the 20-acre vineyard property, which used to be part of the historic Meyers Ranch, specifically because the soil composition and micro-climate lend themselves to Cantiga’s unique wine style. The multi-generation family winemaking tradition has preserved the art of making classic-style wines that align well with food and benefit from long periods of cellaring. The approach is one of minimal intervention, gentle handling, and avoidance of malolactic (secondary) fermentation. A delicate balance at harvest of sugar and acidity (the main indicators of ripeness) is essential for this style, and Cantiga’s vineyard produces the ideal balance in its Estate Shiraz, Syrah, Petite Sirah, Grenache, and Semillon.
The Cantiga winery is a neo-Gothic edifice situated on a stunning knoll top that overlooks the estate vineyards. It is surrounded by lovingly tended gardens and an event patio that is open to picnickers.
On weekends, winemaker and owner Rich Rorden is almost always in the tasting room, pouring wine for visitors and discussing his special winemaking style—which he does with passion. The current releases you will taste are typically an average of six or seven years old! Guests are frequently treated to samples of the family’s special recipes paired with their wines as a demonstration of the wine’s compatibility with food. A visit to Cantiga is always an educational experience, at the very least!