2017 Pinot Noir
This medium ruby wine has aromas of cherry, ginger, cinnamon, vanilla, and cranberry. It has fresh fruit characteristics with layers of allspice, earth, tomato vine, and brightness. This medium-bodied wine shows elegance and grace that finishes with soft, rounded tannins, while providing complexity with a lengthy, smooth finish.
Jeb Dunnuck – 91 points
Vinous Media – 93 points
Estate Oak Club $46.75/bottle Reserve Oak Club $44.00/bottle
The vintage of 2017 saw the highest rainfall on record thus far, totaling just over 20 inches, nearly double than last year. Wesaw a mild frost season while bloom in May resulted in a strong fruit set seen across all varietals. The summer months of June and July were warm, maintaining an average of 85 degrees, with several days of 100+ degrees. The first week of September brought on the warmer days, influencing rapid sugar accumulation, followed by some early and undesirable rains, which brought on minimal rot in a few blocks. The yields were average resulting in a healthy crop. The quality was balanced, yielding small berries with great concentration and color, making it a vintage of high quality wine.
Hilliard Bruce Vineyard is located on the cool slopes near the western boundary of the Santa Rita Hills appellation. It is comprised of 15.7 acres of Pinot Noir and 5.3 acres of Chardonnay. The climate is defined by a cool and windy maritime influence, allowing the vines an extended growing season. The soil is comprised of sandy silt, which allows for fast drainage and ultimately, more complex flavors. The vineyard prides itself in being Sustainable in Practice (SIP), while maintaining the vineyard’s health and productivity.
This Pinot’s fresh fruit and light spice elements pairs well with a wide range of food. Some favorites are grilled salmon with asparagus, braised rabbit with garlic, roasted vegetables with rosemary, and duck confit in a white bean stew. It also makes a perfect match with Asian cuisine, such as sesame-ginger chicken wings and Korean BBQ ribs.