The 2016 Sonoma Coast highlights the wild side of Pinot Noir. This wine evokes the smells of walking a trail on the coast through a redwood forest. Notes of dried herbs and sous bois mix with wild berry fruits and cedar. The aromas are further complexed with dried citrus peel, clove, and allspice. The palate typifies the coastal tannin profile, with a robust finish of citrus peel, gravel, and stone. The structured and mineral-driven palate exudes flavors of cherry pit, flowers, and coffee.
The Pinot Noir for this blend was sourced from the Terra de Promissio Vineyard, the Precious Mountain Vineyard, and our Drake Estate Vineyard.
The 2016 vintage was an excellent growing season, and started out as the previous four vintages; with a warm and dry winter. Above average temperatures and modest rainfall in the winter months brought a normal bud break in all growing regions. The main difference in 2016 was cooler temperatures in late February, and increasing rain totals in March that helped slow down vegetative growth. The net result was a slightly longer vegetative cycle, a slower grape maturation cycle, and therefore a later harvest compared to 2015. These events allowed for perfect maturation of the grape tannins and flavor development. Flowering happened under normal conditions with a slight cooling trend in May, which ultimately prevented blockbuster yields. Temperatures after fruit set were normal, but as veraison approached there were a few heat spikes that jumpstarted the ripening process.
Harvest started with pleasant weather on August 10 in the Middle Reach Neighborhood vineyards (Westside Road). Weather in late August cooled, and by early September temperatures warmed up and dry conditions prevailed. The result was our core harvest was completed under ideal conditions by end of September.
Overall, the wines from the 2016 vintage exhibit wonderfully polished tannins due to long and slow grape maturation on the vine.