2010 Renteria Pinot Noir Los Carneros
VINEYARD: The Knittel vineyard is located in a prime Napa Carneros site. It has all of the aspects of a perfect Pinot vineyard: planted to 5 different Pinot Noir clones, on an east facing, gentle hillside on clay soils in a cool microclimate. The different clones not only add complexity but also impart various sensory components to the wine. Clone 115 adds depth and tannin structure. The Dijon clones 667 and 777 give the wine’s aroma the higher fruit tones, while the complexity and “spice” flavors come from the California selections, Calera and Swan.
VINTAGE: The 2010 vintage was very cool all throughout the growing season, until there was a burst of heat in mid September. This heat accelerated ripening and the harvest was just a bit later than normal. The Knittel Vineyard is the warmest of the Renteria Pinot vineyards with less fog than Russian River or the Sonoma Coast. These grapes ripen earlier and are more susceptible to any September heat waves. When cool harvest was interrupted by a mid September heat spell, we picked the grapes soon after.
The Knittel clones were fermented in open top fermenters. All clones were fermented together: 115, 777, as well as the remaining three clones: 667, Calera and Swan. This allows the fruit/wine to marry together earlier, also it was a low yield year. The grapes were 5-day cold soaked and Assmanhaussen yeast was used. It was pressed at dryness, and put into French oak barrels immediately. The wine was aged 11 months in barrels prior to bottling on August 4, 2011.
TASTING NOTES: The Renteria Pinot Noir is influenced by the warmer weather from the Carneros Napa location. The aromas tend to the cherry and darker fruits, like plum with some vanilla and cloves qualities. The mouthfeel is richer and thicker than the cooler Russian River vineyards, but is balanced with a richer mid palate as well. This wine is a classic Carneros Pinot Noir. This wine has the ability to age for 8-10 years.