2014 Holdredge Russian River Valley Pinot Noir Petits Cadeaux
"Tiny berries, with a huge voice"
The vineyard where this is grown is notable for having a Pinot clone that produces the tiniest clusters I’ve ever seen- year in and year out. These tiny clusters carry tiny berries- so the ratio of skin to juice is heavily weighted to skin, which is where all the flavor, aromas and texture comes from. These clusters are, for a winemaker, “little gifts” from nature, and the kind of thing that gets a winemaker’s pulse racing. Sometimes, when a load of fruit comes in, and even though you’ve seen it dozens of time in the vineyard, it just carries a sense of being “special”. When this fruit came in, it just had that air about it. It wasn’t about the juice chemistry, or anything empirical (although it was “textbook” perfect in many ways), it just seemed to have a poise and grace about it.
This was a wine that confidently found its own path once in barrel- some wines require management- this one clearly had a focus and direction; that character that was there from day 1. We always speak of Pinot being an expression of “place and time”, and the “place” component was there; when we chose the barrels for this lot, I was struck by how similar the nose was to the 2013, and to the flavor profile of that place. The 2014 is a little more focused in the mid-palate than the 2013, and while still full and rich, it’s slightly firmer and more graceful than the outright lushness of the 2013. It’s a very nice wine that is going to just shine with rich winter foods, decant for a good while if you enjoy it this holiday season, but it will be fun to watch as it evolves over the next 5-8 years.
Cases produced: 87