2015 Emerald Ridge Pinot Noir


Tasting Notes

Our Emerald Ridge Vineyard wasn’t hit quite so hard by the wet May weather, so our yields were better than at many of our Pinot sites closer to the coast, but was still down about 20% from 2014. That extra concentration of energy to fewer grapes gave us an even more packed Emerald Ridge Pinot this vintage. Aromas of raspberry blossoms and a basket of summer berries and cherries lead the wine. Notes of cinnamon, clove and nutmeg add their spicy/savory accent to the sweet berries, giving the wine an added layer of interest. The bright summer pie theme continues in the mouth, with black raspberries riding on a satiny texture of plush tannins. A dusky sandalwood spice chimes in on the lengthy finish. The bright and dark nature of the wine make it a great match for dishes like roasted pheasant, gnocchi in a pesto sauce, or grilled swordfish.

Winemaker's Notes

The Vineyard

We love making this wine more and more every year. It exemplifies our favorite Green Valley Pinot Noir characters with its core of berry fruit, solid structure and acidity, silky tannins, and an evolving nature in the glass. The vineyard is situated on an east-facing knoll the middle of Green Valley. In 2001, Steve planted its perfectly drained Goldridge sandy loam soil to several Pinot clonal blocks. Dan has chosen to use three to consider for this special offering: the mixed block of Pommard and 2A, which produces deep, dark and chewy wine (there’s always something special about mixed clone fermentations); the 667 block, which adds focus and precise berry fruit; and the 828 block, providing ebullient freshness and solid structure. This year the wine was constructed from twelve barrels each of the 828 and 2A/Pommard blocks, to provide us a wine with the crystalline fruit focus and luscious pleasure that we adore from this neighborhood.


After hand sorting and destemming each block into small open top fermenters, the must is cold-soaked for 5 days in order to gently extract color, spice and fruit characters, while mitigat­ing harsher tannins. Each clone is treated individually: the Pommard/2A block needs the gentlest handling given its highly tannic nature, while the 828 generally likes the longest time in the fermenter to enhance its floral aromatics. The lots are punched down between 1 and 3 times per day depending on the stage of fermentation and character of the lot. The blend was put together in March of 2016, then sent back to barrel until its bottling in February of 2017. Taransaud barrels provide weight and richness, Hermitage barrels bring spice (think blueberry cobbler), while Fouquet chimes in with a little extra sweetness.

Awards & Accolades

94 Wine Enthusiast

93-94 Pinotfile

91 Planet Grape

90 Connoisseur's Guide

5 Stars Restaurant Wine: "The Emerald Ridge 2015 is an intensely flavored, young, well balanced wine that is complex in character (raspberry, cherry, kola nut, rosehips, black tea), lightly oaked, mildly tannic, and very long and persistent on the finish. First rate."


2015 Emerald Ridge Pinot Noir

Technical Data

Alcohol: 13.8 %
Titratable Acidity: 6.4 g/L
pH: 3.61
Winemaking: Open top fermentation, cold soak, punch down
Barrel Aging: Aged 16 months in 50% new French oak

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