Owner Ben Pon appreciates wine as an art- a form of art that transcends the ordinary. His dream with Bernardus is to make a red wine equal to the finest from Bordeaux. To achieve this, Ben, a Dutchman who could have planted vineyards anywhere in the world, has chosen the Carmel Valley for his estate vineyards and winery. Since the early 1970’s, there has been a growing awareness of the outstanding potential for Bordeaux varieties from this new viticultural appellation.
Bernardus winery planted Ingrid’s Vineyard in 1999 at the same time Bernardus Lodge was being built. The vineyard was to be both a source of high quality grapes for the winery and also a beautiful entry way to the Lodge. It was originally planted to one acre of Pinot Noir and six acres of Chardonnay; however in 2006 the acreage was changed to 3.5 acres of Pinot Noir and 3.5 acres of Chardonnay.
Bernardus owns 210 acres in the Cachagua region of the upper Carmel Valley on two sites. The Marinus vineyard comprises 36 acres. Of the 36 acres, 25 acres are planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, 9 acres to Merlot, 1 acre to Cabernet Franc and 1 acre to Petit Verdot.