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Under The Wire Chardonnay Brosseau Vineyard 2017 w1 s1

When you drive up Highway 1, past the generously called “town” of Jenner and head up out of the fog inland, climbing in elevation to over 1000 feet, you experience what I call “The Truman Show” -- a place so beautiful, it can’t be real. Pulling into our Pinot block on the northwestern edge of the Hirsch’s property, with an azure backdrop provided by the Pacific Ocean, the feeling continues. In 1980 David Hirsch bought an old sheep ranch with depleted soils and has spent his life molding it into the life-filled, ecologically vibrant piece of paradise it is now. In the process, he and legendary winemakers like Ted Lemon, Steve Kistler and Burt Williams fundamentally changed how we think about Pinot Noir in California, making the far reaches of western Sonoma one of the most celebrated terroirs for grape in the world. We were lucky to work with Hirsch for four years, 2016 being the last (we are still holding onto our 2015 and 2013 bottlings). It is a foundational vineyard for us as we have developed our understanding of making sparkling wine. The Hirsch Vineyard wines (both still and sparkling) have a depth of red fruit on the nose, suggesting wild raspberry and blackberry combined with sea air and perhaps a bit of conifer-inflected coastal maquis. Upon safe arrival of fruit to the winery (never assured on the winding coastal roads, ask Chris ) the grapes were foot-stomped and left to soak for 90 minutes to steep a touch of color into the wine and unlock the subtleties bound in the thick skins. After a very gentle pressing to keep pH’s low and natural acidity high, the wine was fermented in a few neutral oak barrels and left on lees for six months prior to secondary fermentation. 31 months en tirage and 3 grams per liter of dosage. Disgorged January 2020.
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