2016 was a fine year for growing exceptional Pinot Noir in Los Carneros, California. In the winter and early spring, enough rain fell to fill reservoirs and ensure sufficient water for irrigation. A slightly early bud break was followed by a mild spring with minimal frost danger. Thanks to a relatively steady and mild July and August and then a series of warm days at the end of the growing season, vineyards were able to progress to perfect ripeness. Harvest was later than anticipated, but being an early-ripening variety our Pinot Noir was generally unaffected by later season heat spikes or rain events. Because of this we were able to choose our harvest dates to optimize each vineyard’s best state of ripeness and produce a delicious, layered and balanced wine.
We work very closely with our growers, only harvesting fruit from those who truly understand the challenges of such a temperamental grape variety. We match the best sites with the best clones suited to those sites, and as such, our Pinot Noir is a combination of choice clones sourced from premier vineyards throughout Los Carneros, providing a dynamic spectrum of characteristics and flavors for the final master blend. Clones from the vineyards include:
- Swan – this heirloom clone named for Joseph Swan – produces small clusters of intense aromas and bright red fruit flavors.
- Martini brings extremely soft, ripe and sweet berry flavors
- Dijon 777 these generally mid-size berries offer the dark fruit aromas and elegant tannin structure
- Pommard produces the firm tannins, deep color and a touch of spice
Our winemaker closely monitored the grapes during the final stages of ripening, tasting them regularly to determine the ideal ripeness. The fruit was hand-picked and placed into small bins at their peak. Grapes were gently de-stemmed into small open-top fermenters for optimal color extraction, where they were inoculated with Burgundian yeast selections. Following fermentation, the free-run wine was divided into a combination of French and American oak barrels, while the remaining skins were gently pressed to extract more color. Dozens of lots were barreled separately by vineyard, as well as individual vineyard blocks to mature separately for ten months.
Lush red fruit aromas of strawberry and cherry with a hint of spice, the red fruit flavors are extended on the palate with strawberry, Bing cherry coupled with round black tea like tannins. Our Los Carneros Pinot Noir an ideal wine to savor on its own, as well as a perfect pairing for glazed duck breast, chicken Marsala or mild, creamy cheeses like brie and camembert.
|Wine Style:||Red Wine|