California / USA

At A Glance


John Raytek


West Sonoma Coast, Santa Cruz Mountains


Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon


Organic, Biodynamic


"Ceritas" : Spanish for mineral expression of the soil.

Their Story

“Winemaking involves a great many small decisions, each affecting the next. One can only hope to get them all right, to capture what was in the grapes to begin with.” — John Raytek and Phoebe Bass, Winemaker and Owners of Ceritas Wines

Our relationship with Ceritas goes back to the Spring of 2009 when first introduced to John Raytek and Phoebe Bass. After spending a day with John and Phoebe walking Escarpa and Porter-Bass Vineyards (photo below), we knew their was something magical about their wines, their love for what they are doing, and for the fruit they are working with.

Mid Post Image
Of course, it’s about the vines. But it’s also about relationships.

Since their first vintage in 2005, we have been personally buying and collecting the Ceritas wines. Now for them to allow us the opportunity to share their wines in South Carolina is an incredible gift which we honor with great excitement. Over the years, John and Phoebe have stayed connected with us as dear friends with incredible hearts. We cherish this friendship and love sharing their story.

“As with our winemaking, our attention is focused on the individual site’s needs, rather than a universal approach to all of the vineyards.” — John Raytek and Phoebe Bass

“Without question, the foundation of great wine is outstanding fruit. Our belief in the fruit drives our commitment to our growers and vineyard sites. Together, we spend much of the year listening, learning, and refining what we know about the vineyards, with the goal of allowing each site to express itself fully. Truth be told, we spend far more time in the vineyard than the winery, tending to inordinately specific details of each vine. We strive for grapes that are physiologically ripe and balanced, that bear the fingerprint of the particular vineyard and vintage.

Once harvest is completed, we trust that the fruit has its own path, and believe our responsibility is not to obscure it by the signature of our winemaking methods.

While we favor minimal intervention in the cellar, we subscribe to particular methods that have proven best for expressing site through varietal. Our winemaking is flexible rather than dogmatic, inspired by traditional winemaking allowing the voice of the land and season to shine, rather than the effects of human cellar techniques.”

– John Raytek and Phoebe Bass

Current Releases

Interview with John Raytek, Owner and Winemaker of Ceritas

Where were you born and raised? State College, Pennsylvania If you could briefly describe your approach in the vineyard what would it be? Our approach in the vineyard is dictated by observation and empiricism, as opposed to prescriptive farming. Our site specific techniques vary with the individual season before us taking into account the desired wine we hope to produce. What excites you most about your vineyards? Variety of soils, aspects and individual micro climates from which we get to work. Our old vine holdings allow us to dry farm giving the vines the opportunity to translate site in the most natural way. If you could say one thing to the sommeliers who are introducing people to your wines for the first time, what would it be? Enjoy the wines. What is your favorite type of music? Old school Kingston dance or dub music or jazz If you could have any superhero power, what would you choose? Flying Visit Ceritas Website