Twenty-five years ago I had my eye on the property that is now my Meredith Estatevineyard. My home at the time was just down the lane, surrounded by apple orchards. Then, as now, I welcomed the cool, fog-enshrouded evenings, and I have always believed that this area, the Sebastopol Hills, is ideal for growing priceless grapes.
This Pinot Noir, the second from Meredith Estate, deepens my conviction. Four handpicked Pinot Noir clones bestow distinctive qualities: the classic California Swan selection and Mt. Eden clone present expansive fruit flavors while the two Dijon clones add structure and length. I fermented each clone separately, using labor-intensive Méthode à l’Ancienne techniques, a disciplined process of cold-soaking the grapes and whole-cluster fermentation in open-top tanks. The wine then aged for ten months in French oak barrels, coopered specifically to complement this Pinot Noir.
Dark cherry, berry and plum fruits, a hint of cola and a clean earthiness I call forest floor convey the bright, luxurious flavors of this cool region Pinot. The wine’s smooth texture, lively acidity and firm structure suggest excellent aging potential as the lush flavors gracefully unfold over time.