The Wine Enthusiast Magazine: 93 Points
Our flagship Pinot Noir from the 2014 vintage is a very special wine. We made less than 200 cases of this beauty - we believe it is one of the finest wines we have ever produced.
The Santa Clara Valley is a storied winegrowing district, stretching back to the early 1850s - perhaps best known for “bigger” style reds. But Sarah’s Vineyard’s location in the Valley is a unique one, situated as we are in the cooler climate “Mt. Madonna” district of the southern Santa Cruz Mountains. Here fog and winds from nearby Monterey Bay
dramatically cool down the estate, extending the growing season and providing superior conditions for superb Pinot Noir.
Winemaker / proprietor Tim Slater recalls the growing season, harvest, and cellar regimens: “2014 was a bit cooler of a year, on the heels of the record 2013 harvest. We dropped fruit in 2014, and being mindful of the drought, we cut back irrigation by 33%. The result was a yield reduction of about 25% from the vineyard. Harvest was a bit cool with strong ocean winds moderating the temperatures and extending the hang time about one week later than normal; harvest took place from the 14th to 23rd of September. The clusters were smaller than usual and berry size was also smaller than usual.” “We gently destemmed whole berries into small fermentors, cold soaked for 3 days, allowed a robust native fermentation, then inoculated with RC212 yeast to insure complete fermentation. Hand punch downs 3 times daily. The wine was pressed off the skins when the residual sugar was below 20 g/l and fermentation completed in barrel. The cooperage used was François Frères and Vallaurine, 33% new oak with the balance in one and two year old barrels; barrel maturation proceeded for 17 months. The wine was bottled and hand waxed in March 2016. It was allowed a year of bottle age prior to release. Only 142 case were made.”
Harvest Date: September 14 - 23 2014
Cooperage: French Oak 33% New, 18 Months.
Bottling Date: March 2016