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2011 Russian River "Jouissance"

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About the Vineyard...

Gilbert Perezís two acre vineyard in the southwestern corner of the appellation, only nominally protected by the coastal hills and open to the maritime influence of the Pacific Ocean, is the single source for these grapes. The soils here are loose, sandy, and well-drained, typical for the Russian River Valley, and known for producing explosive and aromatic fruit flavors balanced with acidity and earthy aromas.  All seventeen rows are planted with Dijon 115 clones, which tend to add perfumed aromas and light spice notes to the lush fruitiness obtained from the soils.

About the Vintage...

2011 began cool, with later bud break. Flowering and fruit set was disrupted by heavy and uncharacteristically late rain storms. This limited fruit production considerably resulting in significantly lower yields, sometimes as low as half of typical production. The summer remained cool--one of the coolest on record--pushing the harvest date back further into September. In the end, vineyard management and assiduous farming practices helped to insure that this well-situated vineyard ripened fully, yielding wines with bold aromatics and a soft, generous palate.

About the Wine...

We fermented in our one ton, open-top tanks, layering the bottom 25% of each tank with whole clusters of fruit, adding structure and spice notes to the back palate and balancing the otherwise plush fruit of Gilbertís Vineyard.  A warm fermentation with a combination of native and isolated Burgundian yeasts produced excellent and focused flavor extraction, complemented and completed with traditional punch-downs by hand. The wine was aged entirely in Francois Freres cooperage, half new, and racked once, gently, prior to bottling.  Grapes, must, and wines were moved using gravity through to the barrel and using inert gas through racking and bottling.   168 cases produced.

Tasting Notes...

Lightly spiced and fruity aromas of strawberry, cherry, and raspberry mix with lavender and rose petal to announce this hedonistic blend of fresh fruit and earthy spice. The wine opens to a broad and soft mid-palate of cherry, cassis, strawberry pie, cherry cola, and ripe raspberry and passion fruit. The palate is well-lifted and brightened with a refreshing acidity that welcomes this wine to the table. The finish brings out dried fruits, plums, figs, pepper, tobacco, and cinnamon and cigar box. Stick some away and expect it to be in a nice, sweet spot in 6 or 7 years.