Klopp Ranch clearly demonstrates the importance of viticulture in producing fine wine. The vineyard has it all: Ted Klopp, the dedicated grower; a prime location on the Laguna Ridge in Russian River Valley; sandy Goldridge soils; and Swan and Pommard clones specifically chosen for the site. Ted Klopp and I have worked closely together since 1989; I admire his keen knowledge of the ranch, his readiness to experiment and his willingness to thin his crop significantly in order to produce intense fruit. I honor this dedication to quality by purchasing Klopp Ranch Pinot Noir by the acre, not the ton.
The perfectly ripened, small-berried clusters from Klopp Ranch have lovely, rich texture and impressive structure. Using Méthode à l’Ancienne techniques with the fruit I selected for this vineyard designate, I began with cold soaking, followed by partial whole-cluster fermentation in small tanks and punch downs by hand. These Burgundian practices maximize extraction of the effusive Pinot Noir aromas and layered flavors. The wine aged ten months in French oak coopered by Tonnellerie Remond, producing a harmonious balance of fruit, oak and spice.
Generous aromas of dark cherry and blueberry match the wine’s intense flavors. This is a voluptuous, expansive wine with a lengthy, luscious finish indicating this Pinot Noir will continue to develop with age. Here is the wine to hold for those occasions, years from now, that celebrate the births, weddings and other important events of 2000.