This diminutive, 6-acre vineyard surrounds our winery in the deep, sandy soils of Laguna Ridge here in Russian River Valley. My husband, Ken, and I had the good fortune to purchase this property in 1999. How lucky we were! We have found the soils to be a perfect match for my UCD 37 clone of Pinot. I made this selection back in 1975 from Mount Eden Vineyards, where I was the resident winemaker during my first industry position. I sent cuttings from a single mother vine to UC Davis for virus cleanup. This small-berried selection has proved to be both delicious and sturdy in the face of the multitude of viral diseases that abound today in Pinot Noir scion wood.
Like a faceted garnet, the appearance of this wine portends what’s to come in the glass. Rich, mouthwatering and enticing, this dramatic Pinot captivates us with its intense dark cherry, brambleberry, blueberry and signature cocoa powder. This opening flourish is followed by starlike bursts of sarsaparilla, hoisin sauce, cognac, violets and fig.
In the mouth, the theme of dark fruit and chocolate is intensified. Though the tannins are generous, the palate is velvety smooth. The finish is mouth-filling, with a crescendo of creamy vanilla in the lingering aftertaste.