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This Chardonnay comes from a unique site high in the Sierra Foothills, just outside the town of Murphys. The vines were planted in 1974 without grafting onto rootstocks (own-rooted) into schist soils on limestone bedrock. Matthew Rorick (Forlorn Hope) and his family recently purchased the vineyard. The vine age, elevation, and the extremely rocky soils create low yielding vines with the tiniest of clusters.
he grapes received a short overnight soak on skins and then went directly to the press. Juice was transferred to neutral barrels and fermentation occurred spontaneously. The wine received a bit of sulfur in the late spring and again at bottling.
The wine has a nutty, wet stone nose, and a weighty palate of lemon oil, crushed rocks, with just a bit of pastry cream.
Retail: $27- SOLD OUT
This Syrah is from Charles Heintz's vineyard in in the town of Occidental, a cool site in western Sonoma County. This vineyard, which is known primarily for it's exceptional Chardonnay, has the capacity to produce amazing Syrah, right at the cusp of ripeness.
In 2014, with lower yields in the vineyard, fruit was fermented whole cluster. Fermentation occurred without any additions and punchdowns were carried out by foot. After 14 days on skins, the wine was lightly pressed and moved to a concrete egg. The wine has been bottled without any additions of any kind, including sulfur.
This "sans soufre" bottling is extremely floral, a pure unadulterated expression of Syrah. The tannins are fresh, not heavy, giving the wine grip while still maintaining it's brightness.
Retail: $32- SOLD OUT
2014 Sparkling Valdiguié Pétillant Naturel
Valdiguié from Terry Wilson's Rancho Chimiles vineyard was harvested a few weeks earlier than it's still counterpart. The grapes, after a few days of carbonic maceration, were gently pressed, fermented in a concrete egg, then finished fermentation in bottle. The bottles were then riddled, disgorged, topped up, and sealed by hand. This is pure fermented grape juice without any addition of sulfites, acids, sugar, or yeast.
The finished wine is a slight pink color, brilliantly effervescent, with a nose of strawberry jam and roses. The palate is bright and clean, with plenty of red fruit character with a snappy, refreshing finish. Try serving it chilled and then letting it warm in the glass to experience the full complement of floral notes.
Retail: $28 - SOLD OUT
Valdiguié (formerly called Napa Gamay) from Terry Wilson’s Rancho Chimiles vineyard in Wooden Valley, Napa Valley AVA. Vines are 40+ years old.
Fruit was destemmed into 1 ton bins. Fermentation occurred without any additions and punchdowns were carried out by foot and tool. After 12 days on skins, the wine was lightly pressed and moved to old French oak barrels and puncheons.
The wine is light, fruity, intensely floral with good acidity and a tannic backbone. Compared to the 2013, the 2014 has more impressive bass notes and a greater mouthfeel.
Retail: $25 - SOLD OUT
2014 Pinot Gris
This Pinot Gris is from the Delfino vineyard in the Sierra Foothills, just outside of Placerville. A tiny little parcel on pinkish, rocky soils, we only made 77 cases of this wine in 2014.
Fruit was hand harvested and whole cluster pressed without addition of sulfur. After a racking off of juice lees, the wine went through a native fermentation in older barrels. Malolactic fermentation was arrested to preserve acid and the wine was bottled without addition of fining agents.
The Pinot Gris is showing some slight tropical fruit notes on the nose, with a weighty palate. The wine is bone dry, but has a slight impression of sweetness that develops into some exotic spice on the finish.
Retail: $25 - SOLD OUT
2014 St. Laurent
This Austrian variety has been grown by Dale Ricci, a longtime family friend, for about 15 years. Ricci vineyards is on the Sonoma half of Carneros and only a few miles from the San Pablo Bay.
The wine was made with very little extraction to bring out the unique characters of the site and variety. As with all of our wines, only native yeasts were used and the addition of sulfites occurred post fermentation and pre-bottling. Only 10.9% alcohol, this wine is definitely the most counter culture of these releases. A little funk on the nose blows off quickly, giving way to cherries and spice. The palate is lean and bright, with very light tannins and a finish that refreshes. We currently recommend decanting this wine.