2009 Pinot Noir, Pastorale Vineyard
100% estate-grown Pinot Noir from our Pastorale Vineyard.
15 months in 70% new and 30% two- to three-year-old French oak barrels before bottling on April 13, 2011.
This special selection from the Pastorale Vineyard once again distinguishes its terroir characteristics from our other estate plantings. Two blocks, each planted to a Calera selection, were separately fermented, one whole berry fermentation with partial whole clusters, and the other 100% whole cluster fermented in an oak open-top tank. Both fermentations were macerated gently and only as needed to maintain a healthy fermentation temperature. The result is a silky wine with great Freestone expression.
The 2009 growing season was slow and cool, producing wines with impeccable balance. The year started with good rains lasting into the beginning of May. Budbreak was normal in mid-March and temperatures were moderate to cold throughout spring. Vines did not endure frost damage in 2009 and bloom took place between May 23 - June 8. Temperatures through August were quite normal, with cool nights and foggy days, helping the vines to mature and develop flavor, color and tannin slowly and evenly. Pinot Noir veraison took place early to mid-August and once the warmer temperatures of September arrived, ripening kicked into high gear. Pinot Noir generally has a short harvest window, but 2009 was special; the harvest continued for a slow and steady 3 - 4 weeks, finishing well before the mid-October rains.