Beautifully dense in color. The aromatic profile is power packed with notes of a fruit bowl chock-full of dark fruits, such as blueberry and boysenberry. A top note of dried flowers adds a wonderful surprise and seems to counterpoint the denseness of the nose. Saddle leather and cigar box further the complex the brooding nature of this wine. Flavors of Bing cherry immediately transition to blond tobacco and Mocha Java coffee bean notes. The finish is round and supple with a tenacious sappy cling.
The Foss Vineyard sits above Eastside Road in the Middle Reach region of the Russian River Valley. With a fine, clay loam soil type and a temperate microclimate, this site is extremely well drained and therefore an excellent site for Pinot Noir. Planted to Pommard, Swan, Mt. Eden, and 667 clones, together they offer a rich and complex palette to draw from in blending this incredibly rich and complex wine.
The 2015 vintage continues the hit parade of great quality vintages of the last four years. The season started under extreme drought conditions for the 4th consecutive season despite a wet early winter. January was very dry and warm and brought bud break earlier than expected by about 12 days compared to 2014. The rains returned in early February and dramatically slowed down the growth of the plants. May temperatures were some of the coldest on record and negatively impacted flowering and therefore fruit set. It was common for clusters to have millerandage, or a “hens and chicks” (big berry, little berry) phenotype, great for wine quality but severely limited yields. By the end of July the heat returned and, coupled with limited fog intrusion, the ripening process sped along quickly. In fact, harvest started on the last day of July…the earliest on record in the 36 vintages at Williams Selyem! Despite an auspicious start and a dramatic finish to the season, the 2015 wines may surpass some of the great recent vintages as they are bold and yet maintain their trueness to site. With superb color, structure and acidity, the wines have staying power, but with the wonderful texture and richness that are expressed today, who can resist them now?