The planting of clone 32 at Split Rail Vineyard in 1986 was an accident: the owner had ordered Chardonnay and got a Champagne clone of Pinot Noir instead. Nearly 30 years later, we get to benefit from this grand mistake: Clone 32, because of its tiny clusters, low yield and maturity requirements, is very rarely used in still wines these days. But what a still wine it makes when it’s allowed to ripen fully on old, dry-farmed vines planted on a mountaintop in Corralitos.
Fruit and leather. When she was young, in-barrel, she smelled like smashed ollalieberries in a baseball glove, which is a very good memory for me, as a baseball fan from Pescadero (google Pescadero + ollalieberries). There’s a grippy tannin and savory earthiness underneath vivid, velvety fruit that has evolved into the cherry spectrum, with hints of citrus and savory herbs floating in and out. Like nothing I’ve ever had before in the Pinot world. Like the full vineyard blend, she’s a bit shy and takes some time to reveal all her nuances. She is not meant to be obvious.
- Hand harvested 9/14 at 24º brix.
- 100% destemmed.
- Aged on the lees 10 months in French oak, 50% new..
- Coopers: Ambrosia Complex and Ermitage.
- Yeast: Native, AMH. pH 3.61. TA 6.2 g/L.
- Unfined and unfiltered.
- Retail Price: $45. 97 cases produced.
100% destemmed and brought to 45º. Allowed to gradually warm up over 5 days until a native fermentation began. Inoculated at 20º brix with AHM. Hand punchdowns twice daily. Pressed to tank at 3º brix and allowed to finish in-barrel. Inoculated with MBR31. Lees stirred every 2 weeks for 3 months, aged on the lees until July. Racked via argon pressure wand once in July and racked to tank for bottling in mid-August. Bottled unfined and unfiltered on August 10th.