2009 Pillow Rd Pinot Noir
The 2009 Pinot Noir was fermented in many small (1 to 2 ton) lots in open top tanks. The grapes were destemmed into the open top fermenters via gravity, after hand sorting. The must was punched down as much as 6-7 times per day. A majority of the wine was fermented with natural yeasts for an average of 7 days, after a 5 day cold soak. After pressing at dryness, the wine was put into barrels by gravity for an 11 month barrel aging in Burgundian French oak barrels (38% new and 62% one and two year old neutral barrels).
The Pillow Road vineyard is located in the Russian River Valley of West Sonoma County southwest of the city of Sebastopol in an area affectionately known as the Sebastopol Hills. Previously identified with Gravenstein apple orchards and counter culture lifestyles, it is now becoming known for outstanding Pinot Noir and high end Pinot Noir vintners. The original orchardists in this area knew to look for the Goldridge soil for planting their apple trees. Goldridge soils are sandy loam soils, with an emphasis on the sand. The sandy component allows the soil to drain quickly during a wet spring. The loam component holds on to a marginal amount of water for supplying the vines throughout the growing season, without either over invigorating or stressing the vines. The climate in this area of West County is one of cool temperatures with fog in the morning, clearing by mid day and returning in late afternoon. All ideal conditions for growing premium Pinot Noir.
The vineyard was planted in 2000 to Pinot Noir clones 777, 115 and 4 on rootstock 101-14. Clone 777 provides aromatics and bright fruit tones; clone 115 gives the wine depth and structure; clone 4 finishes the wine with complexity and balance.
Our goal with Pinot is to achieve finesse with true Pinot varietal flavors. That means we want a “pretty” wine, expressive of Pinot. The 2009 Pillow Rd Pinot Noir has a combination of strawberry, raspberry and clove aromas harkening back to the stunning 2006. The entry is soft yet bright. The mid palate shows silky tannins and gentle flavors. The crisp acidity provides for a long and satisfying finish that is clean, complex, and varietally true. 403 cases were bottled on August 11, 2010.