Planted in 1971, the fruit we use is selected from the oldest section of Sanford & Bendict Vineyard located in the very cool Sta. Rita Hills appellation. It is truly one of the great Pinot vineyards of America.
After careful hand picking in the early morning hours, the grapes arrived at the winery nice and cold. Cold grapes give time for a cold soak and a slower fermentation. During the cold, extended soak, the fruit driven aromas and flavors were extracted from the grapes. The slower fermentation also assisted in the gradual extraction of additional aromas and flavors as the alcohol content slowly rises.
After the grapes reached dryness, the grapes were pressed, and the wine was put in new french oak Francois Frères barrels. The wine was gently racked in the late spring and was returned to barrel for a total of 22 months. No fining or filtration was necessary.
Antonio Galloni's Vinous
Score: 92 "The 2015 Pinot Noir Sanford & Benedict Vineyard is a sexy wine. Sweet red cherry, blood orange, mint and hard candy infuse this racy, elegant supremely elegant Pinot Noir from Au Bon Climat and Jim Clendenen."
Score 90: "Sharp pomegranate aromas and concerntrated strawberry tones meet with star anise, clove and crushed rocks on the nose of this single-vineyard expression. It's taut on the palate with tightly woven raspberry and a touch of thyme, proving rather light and easy."