HARVESTED: September 3rd – October 17th, 2019
VINEYARD: Santa Cruz Mountains
SOILS: loamy clay
BOTTLED: February 2021, 700 cases
COMPOSITION: 100% Pinot Noir
WINEMAKER: Charlie Miller
VINEYARD MANAGER: Thayer Dunwoody
Spring was long and cold with plenty of rain throughout the region. For those vineyards that started bloom after the rains, the crop was very strong. Everything seemed to come late – from bloom to budbreak and right on through varaison. Ripening came about at a snail’s pace, ultimately making for wines with great flavor at lower alcohol levels.
We harvest our Pinot Noir sequentially with co-fermentation in mind, filling open top tanks and T-bins with vineyards matching in fruit profiles. We employ some whole-cluster fermentation (roughly 10% in 2019), providing extra structure and tannin to the final cuvee. The rest of the vineyards were destemmed whole berry and hand sorted on the shaker table. All fruit is cold soaked prior to fermentation to deepen color, followed by either inoculation of commercial yeast strains or native yeasts. The ferments are punched down by hand 2 times a day with peak fermentation temps hitting roughly 90 degrees F. The wine is left on skins for a total of 15-20 days. Our 2019 vintage saw 10% new French oak and was aged in barrel for 16 months. Bottled unfined and unfiltered.
Lifted aromas of alpine strawberries and black cherries meld with a bouquet of coastal garrigue and forest floor. A judicious use of stem inclusion and new French Oak tastefully frame the fruit and speak to La Honda’s pedigree – serious wine and a joy to drink. With some weight and tannin to it but plenty of fruit, the 2019 is a great food wine or a delight on its own.
Enjoy now or over the next 3-5 years.