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Ptit Paysan Chardonnay Jackss Hill is made from 100% Chardonnay
Oak: Combination of neutral oak (2% new French) and stainless tanks
This wine comes from a few vineyards at the base of Jack's Hill, planted on the distinct iron oxide granite that dominates the east side of Salinas Valley, directly east of Sleepy Hollow North.
Bright, crisp and clean with orchard fruit giving way to an intense minerality.
They did not set out to make these wines. They discovered great vineyards at the edge of sensible farming and decided to bring them to light.
The farther they looked, the more they found – remote, challenging vineyards, with hard depleted soils, and intense sunlight tempered only by the coastal breeze. Vineyards capable of producing only the most idiosyncratic wines. Their goal as winemakers is to lightly polish the roughest edges and leave the idiosyncrasy intact. It is here in the back country, filled with individual character, where Le P’tit Paysan comes to life.
Ian Brand's first winery job was in the lab and cellar at Bonny Doon Winery in Santa Cruz. Ian was Vineyard Manager and Assistant Winemaker at Big Basin Vineyards in the Santa Cruz Mountains for four years before he and Heather began their own project.
In the growing sites I Brand Family Winery looks for shallow, rocky soils, good site selection and proper varietal match with the soil and climate. The often overlooked greater Monterey Bay Area has a plethora of underappreciated, rocky vineyards.
Fellom Ranch, Bates Ranch, Besson, Summers, Wheeler, Brigantino, Bayly Ranch, Enz, Brosseau, Spur Ranch, Kristy, Quail Run, La Belle Rose, Cedar Lane, Mission Ranch, Escolle, Arroyo Seco Canyon, Los Ositos.
Brosseau (cert organic)
Enz (practicing organic, dry farmed)
Besson (dry farmed)
Bates (dry farmed)
Sustainable: Kristy, Bayly, Quail Run, Los Ositos.
Le P'tit Paysan Le Ptit Pape is made from 62% Grenache, 19% Syrah, 14% Mourvedre, 3% Counoise, 2% Cinsault
Oak: Mixture of one and twice used barrels for 11 months and puncheons
Playful interpretaion of a domestic, baby, Chateauneuf-du-Pape.
Cherry blossoms, dusty road, red plums, herb de Provence. Rosewater and red cherry on the palate, nimble with medium body. Grippy finish with firm Grenache tannins and hints of olive and sagebrush.
Fermented in several lots ranging from 0-50% whole cluster. Fermeted to dryness on skins.
Aged in neutral barrels for 11 months. From limestone rich soils
Argot Simpatico Ranch Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
Powerful aromas of key-lime, white flowers, orange blossoms and a fierce, flinty, sauvage note define a wildly complex nose. Once in the mouth, gracefully pronounced textures coat the palate delivering an exotic interpretation of cool-climate Chardonnay character — lime peel, orange blossom, ginger and clove —lingerings deep into a vibrant finish.
Planted 1978. Shallow volcanic soils on the gently-sloped, south-facing foothills of Bennett Peak on Bennett Valley’s floor. One of California’s coolest Chardonnay vineyards. In the final year of 3-year draught cycle, Simpatico Ranch saw its earliest ever harvest and smallest crop, exposing a reserve of exoticism and minerality previously untapped. A watershed vintage for both the vineyard, and appellation. Night harvested by hand on 9/16, whole-cluster pressed direct to barrel; no settling to ensure maximum lees contact. Barrel fermented on heavy lees. Malolactic fermentation. 16 months in French oak, 50% new. Finished 2 months in steel tank, low Sulphur during barrel elevage.
There are 225 cases of the 2019 Chardonnay Simpatico Ranch, which is from a cooler, higher elevation site in Sonoma. Lots of peach, tangerine, honeyed minerality, and toasted hazelnuts all emerge from the glass, and while I don't think it matches the 2018, it's a brilliant Chardonnay offering medium to full-bodied richness, nicely integrated acidity, and a great finish. It's beautifully balanced and is going to keep for at least 5-7 years."
- Jeb Dunnuck (September 2021), 94 pts
Notes of meyer lemon and white flower petals carry over to prange blossom and ripe melon.
The late heat in August and September really pushed the Chardonnay to develop into a fruit forward wine. Hand picked, chilled and pressed whole cluster. 10 -20 years old vines.
Sunset Hills Shenandoah Springs Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
This is our first release of a clone-specific wine for Sunset Hills. The goal is to show you a specific terroir, one that year after year delivers excellent fruit quality. I chose clone 96 for its complexity both in ripening and barrel aging. During ripening, the fruit has notes of pineapple and pear with great acidity. I saw this wine as a chance to highlight not only the vineyard, but how detailed we can get in growing and making wine.
75% Clone 96
20% Clone 76
5% Clone 17
Notes of light honeysuckle, Asian pear, raw almond, and lemon custard. Medium body and medium acid.
Chappellet Pritchard Hill Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 95% Cabernet Sauvignon & 5% Petit Verdot.
Embodying the essence of great mountain-grown Cabernet Sauvignon and the majestic terroir or Pritchard Hill, this wine is gloriously opulent and elegant, immediately demanding attention with aromas of violet, black currant, cassis, ripe blackberry, graphite and sweet smoke. As it opens up, fascinating layers of sandalwood and cardamom emerge, as well as hints of vanilla bean, nutmeg, dark chocolate and anise. On the impeccably balanced palate, complex flavors of ripe dark berries and spice dominate, framed by silky, polished tannins that carry the flavors to a long, epic finish.
Jip Jip Rocks Chardonnay is made from 100 percent unoaked Chardonnay.
Light yellow with a pale straw hue. A classic nose of lemon, fresh stonefruit and melon. The palate is clean and fresh with mineral characters underpinning ripe pineapple and lime flavours. This wine will age beautifully over the next 4-5 years.
Winemaking report: Gentle pressing and free run juices create the base of this wine. Traditionally Jip Jip Rocks Chardonnay is a 2/3 blend fermented and matured in stainless steel and 1/3 fermented in stainless steel, which receives extended lees contact to add texture and complexity to the palate.
Attractively fruited and fragrant, the wine shows golden peach, baked fig, vanilla and lemon peel aromas on the nose, followed by a succulent palate that’s creamy and lingering. Beautifully styled and highly enjoyable. At its best: now to 2023. AU$23.00. Dec 2019.
-Wine Orbit 92 Points
Tenuta di Arceno Arcanum is made from 74% Cabernet Franc, 10% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot.
The dark and intense fruit aromas jump out of the glass with ripe plums, blackberries on the vine, and tones of sweet mint. The mouthfeel is full, balanced by gentle acids and rich tannins. Flavors are reminiscent of dark chocolate covered cherries and spicy black pepper. The long finish shows cigar box and cedar spice. A vintage that will age well into the next decade.
It would be impossible to exaggerate the grandeur and majesty of the overachieving 2015 Arcanum. The blend is 74% Cabernet Franc, 10% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot. This full-bodied wine is mostly defined by its texture that is exceedingly rich and smooth with significant infusions of blackberry, plum, spice, tobacco and cured leather. The wine achieves beautiful balance, yet it remains intense and powerful all the while.
-Wine Advocate 97 Points
Emilio Rojo Ribeiro Blanc is made from 80% Trajadura, 20% others.
Emilio Rojo is produced on the hillside facing the morning sun of the Avia Valley. The vineyard has been tirelessly worked for over 30 years and through these efforts it shaped an iconic landscape that is defined by its perfect terraces and artisanal viticulture.
Emilio Rojo has been designed to transcend time. A wine made in communion with Nature and attached to the roots of the vines that faithfully express the character of the place. Emilio Rojo is the perfect fusion of the man and the vineyard.
Emilio Rojo is a blend of different local varieties (treixadura, lado, godello, caíño blanco, albariño and torrontés) that resulted in a delicate, but tense and lively wine. A complex nose that opens with time, marked by round, citrus fruit notes and floral nuances. An energetic and elegant feel with great depth that leads to a long, full finish. An honest representation of this unique plot.
Colour: bright straw;Aroma: expressive, ripe fruit, floral, fine lees;Flavour: full-bodied, complex, long, elegant, good acidity;
Guia Penin 96 Points
2019 was the first vintage under the new ownership, a very good year with mild weather and a quiet harvest when they picked the grapes with no stress. The 2019 Emilio Rojo is a blend of all the grapes in the organically and biodynamically farmed (but not certified) vineyard—Treixadura, Godello, Albariño, Torrontés, Loureira, Caíño Blanco, Lado, etc. The grapes were picked in two passes and fermented with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel followed by 14 months in tank. It's 12.5% alcohol and has a pH of 3.42 and 6.9 grams of tartaric acid per liter (acidity). This might be released in November 2022, after almost two years in bottle. It has a strong herbal strike on the nose, spicy and nuanced, elegant and harmonious. It has great balance and a brilliant texture with fine granularity and a long, tasty, almost salty finish. 2,190 bottles and 300 magnums produced. It was bottled in December 2020. They produced less as they moved to organic viticulture, and unfortunately, there will be even less wine from 2020.
-Wine Advocate 95 Points