Wine Article

2006 Sokol Blosser Pinot Noir Dundee Hills

Last edited on 8/17/2009 by ewill
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From website:
2006 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir

Weve had some unusual weather in recent years, but 2006 was particularly wild. We began with a very wet winter almost 20 of rain from mid-December of 2005 through mid-January of 2006. Then we had record cold in mid-February, followed by snow in mid-March. After that, though, we had a relatively dry spring and a very hot, dry summer. In mid-May we had record heat for a few days, then again for five days in late-June, when the temperature reached 110o F on the 26th. Then we had a ferocious electrical storm on July 4th, followed by another blisteringly hot spell for six days in late-July. For all of August into early-September we continued to have heat spells of 90os to 100o, until we finally had a sprinkle on August 30th, which was the first measurable rainfall in 55 days. To that point we had gone 87 days with only 0.30 of rain, so the vines were beginning to experience significant water deficit stress. In mid-September we had a brief, but significant downpour, followed by a week of cool, showery weather. By that time, though, it was really too late for the cool, damp conditions to have much beneficial impact on the vines, so when the dehydrating hot east wind kicked in on September 23rd we knew we had to begin harvest right away before the grapes shriveled up and turned to raisins. We began harvest on the 24th and raced to bring in all our Pinot Noir and as many of our other grapes as possible as quickly as we could. In (for us) unprecedented fashion, we did 86% of our total harvest (about 310 of our total 360 tons) in seven straight days.

Because of the extreme summer weather, with so many hot days and nights, and because of the desiccating effects of the drying east wind, sugars were a little higher and acids a little lower than ideal. However, despite the difficult conditions during the growing season, the challenging harvest, and the sugar and acid numbers not being in perfect balance, we were able to make some beautiful wines. Our 2006 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir is extremely concentrated yet delicate and elegant soft, supple, harmonious, and packed with intense black cherry and berry fruit, mocha, and our distinctive Jory soil forest-floor earthiness. While this wine may not have the acid and tannin structure to last for fifteen or twenty years, its drinking beautifully now after only four months in the bottle and should age well and develop additional complexity for at least the next five to ten years.
Fact Sheet
2006 Dundee Hills Pinot Noir

Grape Variety/Varieties:
100% Pinot Noir

Age of Vines:
6-15 Years Old

Case Production:
5671 Cases

Dates Grapes Picked:
9/24/06 - 9/28/06

Length/Type of Fermentation:
One-ton and three-ton open top fermenters, punched down 3 times per day

Fermentation Temperature:
Peak ~85 F

Length/Type of Aging:
100% barrel aged, 16 months in barrels, 40% new barrels

Date Wine was Bottled:
March 2008

Food pairings:
Rosemary Rubbed Pork Tenderloin, Duck Breast, Lamb Stew