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2003 Russian River Pinot Noir

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About the Vineyard...
In 2003, we transitioned our Russian River designate into a blend of two vineyards planted for us: The Swicegood Vineyard and the Gilbert Perez Vineyard. Both vineyards are in cooler areas of Russian River closer to the chilly Pacific breezes. The Perez Vineyard, planted entirely to Dijon 115, produces a densely flavored wine loaded with juicy berry and cherry fruit. The Swicegood Vineyard, planted to Dijon 115, Dijon 777 and Pommard, is more aromatic with spicy perfume and slower evolving tannins. In both sites soils are a very light sandy loam ensuring excellent drainage.

About the Vintage...
The 2003 vintage continues a string of successful vintages for Pinot Noir in California. A little warmer (than 2002) overall weather ensured excellent tannin ripeness and conspired to make a more forward and flashy style. Nonetheless, we expect the wines to develop gracefully in bottle due to their underlying structure and quality of tannins.

About the Wine...
The grapes were 100% destemmed into an open top fermenter and cold soaked for 4 days. We punched down by hand 4 times per day at the beginning of fermentation. This was decreased to 2 times per day by the end of fermentation. We innoculated with RC 212 yeast (a Burgundian isolate) and fermented warm, peaking about 96F. The wine was pressed at dryness. The wine was aged entirely in French barrels from the Francois Freres cooperage, 50% new. The wine was racked once prior to bottling. Wine movements were made by pushing with inert gas all the way until bottling. Wine analysis: Alc. 14 %, pH 3.66, ta 5.9 g/l. , r.s. 0.01 g/l. 300 cases produced.

Tasting Notes...
Bing and black cherry fruit, plum, cola, sage, smoke, pepper and baking spices in the nose. Velvety texture with lush sweet cherry fruit and spice echoing on the palate in a long, lingering finish.. The wine possesses a forward and hedonistic approachability but with bright acidity and balanced tannins that will allow continued development over time.