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Van Der Kamp Pinot Meunier

Wine Details

Varietal

Pinot Meunier

Style

Red

Wine Description

The van der Kamp family has been making wine from this highest vineyard on Sonoma Mountain for over four decades and Greg La Follette has been making wine from these grapes for a dozen years across four labels. The small block of Pinot Meunier at the base of the "Red Shoulder" block has always been a small but significant part of the Tandem van der Kamp Pinot noir bottling and added a spicy lift to our Peloton red wine blend. More recently it has also been included in the 2006 Auction Block Pinot bottling. Needless to say, we hold this tiny corner of Sonoma Mountain in very high regard and are read more...pleased to bring you our first varietal bottling of the van der Kamp family's Pinot Meunier. Tasting notes: Decidedly raspberry in the nose but particularly in the late palate, this miniscule (65 case) bottling exudes fruit! Great acidity folds in well with the moderate tannins to accentuate the red fruits, yielding a delicate, nuanced texture and fragrance that cuts against the guns-blazing, bigger-than-life Pinot noir trend seen of late in California. If you want nuance and balance, this wine is for you! Technical Data: Vineyard: Originally planted in the 1960s as a compliment to the van der Kamp sparkling wine, this clone came from the Horn Vineyard in the more easterly reaches of Sonoma County. Now the last bastion of that long-gone vineyard, this old-vine planting of Pinot Meunier is scheduled to be pulled some time in 2008, a victim of Phylloxera. Martin and Ulysses van der Kamp are replanting the SE section of the property to this same clone, so please stay tuned for further bottlings in a few more years! Harvest: 2006 was a wet year, with lots of Botrytis challenge. We picked the PM earlier than ever before, from a ripeness level, and were rewarded with fresh fruit and bright acidity to match the subtle spice of this superb site/varietal match. Fermentation: Despite the cold year, native primary and secondary fermentations went through without a hitch in small, one-ton open-top fermentors with minimal punchdown of 100% whole berries. Frequently we see a lot of struggling yeast from this vineyard but for some reason our microbial friends sailed through the sea of fermentation with flying colors (or Tibetian prayer flags, as is befitting the vineyard which is just across the road from a secluded Bhuddist retreat center). Barrel aging: 10 months in once- and twice-used Damy cooperage Allier (French) oak, medium + toast, on light fermentation lees. Final bottling technical information of 65 cases of this mountain magic: pH: 3.36 TA: 7.21 g/L 14.5% alcohol Residual sugar: 0.94 g/L (bone-dry) Appellation: Sonoma Mountain (hide)