2011 Estate Vineyard Magnum
Raptor Ridge Pinot Noir
In the Vineyard
As with the preceding vintage year, a cool, wet spring delayed bud break and bloom, setting up 2011 for late ripening harvest. Ample sunshine and modest warmth, particularly in the critical post-verasion timeframe, drove our Estate Pinot noir across the ripening goal line just prior to the fall rains. Harvesting later than accustomed, we brought this fruit in October 25 with an average chemistry of 21 Brix, 3.42 pH, and TA Levels of 7.4 g/L; all indicators of a lower alcohol, balanced and potentially soft and elegant wine.
At the Winery
This fruit was cold soaked for 10 days, then quickly warmed to 72oF and inoculated with a single yeast strain (Williams Selyem liquid culture). After an 11-day fermentation cycle, the new wine was gently pressed off and settled clean in tank for 48 hours before going to barrel. A variety of cooperage was employed, using French oak from Atelier, Tonnelier O, Cadus and Deferrari — 27% of which was new oak. A 9-month elevage consisted of gently warming the barrel room to 64oF for 6 weeks in support of timely completion of (inoculated) M/L, followed by a chill down to 52oF for the balance of the barrel aging. Select blocks, clones and barrels were blended together and returned to barrel for two more months prior to bottling just before the next harvest. For this Estate vineyard designate, we selected only the finest barrels that demonstrated elements of silky texture, bright red fruit notes, subtly integrated sweet new oak, and finely polished tannins.
At the Table
This beautiful expression of our Estate vineyard Pinot noir is a stunner on all fronts! In the glass, this wine is vibrant garnet with fantastic clarity. The nose greets you with red cranberry, red cherry, and crushed raspberry, with soft meaty notes of seasoned leather and ripe savory notes. On the palate, one is greeted by generous red fruits like cherry pie and raspberry leaf, wrapped up in a firm structure of tannin and crisp acidity. This wine will age well in your cellar, or enjoy now with rich buttery northwest salmon.