Pinot Noir is always the most expressive when it’s allowed to ripen at a very leisurely pace in mild conditions. The Montaffi Vineyard, in the Russian River Valley, allows the grapes soak to up the afternoon sun, which pushes them slowly toward maturity, while the persistent morning and evening fog prolongs the growing season and keeps the acidity bright.
Fragile and notoriously temperamental, Pinot Noir requires gentle handling and exacting attention to detail from start to finish. The tiny clusters were meticulously hand selected in the cool of the morning and carefully sorted before a few days of “cold soak” to maximize flavor extraction while pulling out only the supplest of tannins. Several days of warm fermentation further enhanced flavor extraction and added layers of complexity. The new wine was gently pressed and transferred to French oak barrels for malolactic fermentation and nine months of aging for seamless integration of fruit and oak.
The gorgeous, jewel-like ruby hue hints at the pleasures to come. Deliciously true to the variety and the terroir it opens with a delicate rush of red fruit - fresh raspberry, sweet red cherry and fraises des bois – infused with dark toffee, forest violets, warm clove and a subtle suggestion of smoke. Remarkably sensuous, luxurious mouthfeel with mouthwatering acidity and a warm, toasty forever finish.
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