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Current Release

2017 Road 31 Pinot Noir Napa Valley

Brix at harvest: 24.1 to 25.3
Time on Oak: 11 months
TA at bottle: 5.3 g/L
Total production: 805 cases

Brix at harvest: 24.1 to 25.3
Time on Oak: 11 months
TA at bottle: 5.3 g/L
Total production: 805 cases

 


“Here is a local Napa Valley Pinot Noir that makes a statement…This wine delivers its characteristic Pinot Noir nose, but carries an inimitable easy body…this Pinot ranks with many of the finest from Burgundy and Oregon…true Pinot lovers will go gaga over this wine.”

--Bob Ecker, Gayot Travel Guides


Vineyard: Three vineyards contributed to this wine. From the Nord Vineyard, at the southern mouth of the Napa River where the water spills into the San Pablo/San Francisco Bay, comes the prettiness of clone 115. Stanly Ranch, in Carneros just west across the Napa River from Nord, provides the structure of clone 114 and the robustness of clone 777.

Vintage: This 2016 wine originated from vines that enjoyed the first significant rainfall after a four-year drought; it has structure and depth that reflect the health of those vines at harvest. There is a freshness to the nose and palate of the wine that I believe reflects the renewed vigor of the vines after the stress of the string of drought-influenced vintages. Batteries were recharged and the vines (and resulting wines) display remarkable youthfulness and energy.

Winecrafting: A three-day cold soak preceded 11 days in the fermenter. As the vines were les stressed than previous vintages, nutrient availability for the yeast was good, and the fermentation proceeded quickly and cleanly. Run to barrel before the finish of fermentation, the wine sat on its gross lees (without oxygen nor racking) for the entire year of aging, which adds a creamy texture and significant weight to an already substantial wine. A mixture of Tokaji (Hungarian) and Mercurey (French) oak contributes a nice blend of spice (particularly nutmeg) and vanilla to the profile.

Wine: This wine has always — from fermenter to barrel to bottle — been effusively aromatic: ripe red fruit with an accompanying hint of tea leaf and rose hips. It has also been both bright (it has ample acidity) and weighty (the mid-palate on this wine brings a depth of fruit that rivals the most unctuous wines I’ve ever crafted). Notes of vanilla and nutmeg, from barrel aging, round out the experience.


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