Vintage 2015
Wine Type Red
Varietal Pinot Noir
Region Carneros
Winemaker Jeffrey Stambor

The 2015 growing season’s very small grapes and clusters gave our 2015 Carneros Pinot Noir its highly saturated color and complex, darker-fruit expression. Aromas of ripe, black cherry and brambleberry reveal hints of sun-warmed rose, forest loam and a savory umami herbaceousness. High-toned notes of sweet baking spices, from French oak barrels, weave through the aromas and linger on the berry-imbued finish. Supple, fine-grained tannins structure the wine, while natural acidity gives it elegant balance and vibrancy, all backed by a classic Carneros earthiness.

Tasting Notes

The 2015 growing season’s very small grapes and clusters gave our 2015 Carneros Pinot Noir its highly saturated color and complex, darker-fruit expression. Aromas of ripe, black cherry and brambleberry reveal hints of sun-warmed rose, forest loam and a savory umami herbaceousness. High-toned notes of sweet baking spices, from French oak barrels, weave through the aromas and linger on the berry-imbued finish. Supple, fine-grained tannins structure the wine, while natural acidity gives it elegant balance and vibrancy, all backed by a classic Carneros earthiness.

Vineyard Notes

We sourced the Pinot Noir grapes from our Beaulieu Vineyard Ranches No. 9, 8 and 5 in the Los Carneros American Viticultural Area (AVA). Here, at the southernmost tip of Napa Valley near the San Francisco Bay, the cool, marine fog in the morning and winds in the afternoon foster vibrantly fruity Pinot Noir. The vines of our estate vineyards are rooted in Haire and Diablo clay loam soils; they are grafted to a blend of Dijon clones for tiers of flavors, with a Pommard clone for structure.

Vintage Notes

Although Napa Valley received 75 percent of its normal rainfall in 2015, the cumulative effect of four years of drought—plus a cold streak in May that caused uneven fruit set—resulted in a very light crop. Winter was short, with warm soil temperatures beginning in January and promoting early budbreak. The small clusters and dry, warm ripening conditions resulted in one of the earliest harvests on record in Napa Valley. The condensed crushing of all varieties kept us hopping, however we were rewarded by wines with deep color and concentrated flavors.

Winemaker's Note

At night, under lights, all of the grapes were hand harvested into bins to preserve their freshness and acidity. After being hand sorted, the grapes were gently destemmed and then cold soaked for gentle color and flavor extraction, before being fermented in stainless-steel tanks and French oak vats. Malolactic fermentation and aging in French oak barrels rounded the wine’s acidity and married the fruit expression with toasty oak spice.

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