2019 Holdredge Russian River Valley Pinot Noir Indigo Dreams, 96 points
This is a wine we’ve only released a handful of times over the years, and it’s been since 2016 since we last made one. It first came about from a decision I once made with a particular lot of fruit. I had deliberately resisted what I considered to be the “most prudent” practice in the winery for that fruit, and instead took a flyer on just letting things go as Nature [apparently] intended. The end result was one of the most popular wines we’ve ever made. It wasn’t so much the flavor profile or the aromatics, or the generosity of the wine- it was more the mood of the whole thing. Yeah, it was visually dark (as is this one), but I think what made it great was that it drank like a luxurious robe you could just slip into and drift away on a rainy day. If you’ve had it before, you understand what I mean.
The 2019 didn’t come around by design; I had harvested some tiny pieces of a few vineyards at different times than their main picks for something completely different I had been thinking about. They had pretty strong personalities and I called lovingly called them “the delinquents”. As it turns out, a random thought during a late-night barrel tasting (something I rarely do at night) took me towards a concept, then to a blend, and ultimately to a blend I loved, which, far more critically, Carri loved. This was nothing like what I had in mind when I made the base wines – but it’s funny how often that is the case.
The final blend was 4 barrels composed of varying portions from 14 barrels from three vineyards. It's got the dark color (insane extraction from many repetitions of pigeage), and it definitely conveys “the mood”. This can easily show well for the next 6 years, but to me, the best part of this wine is how all that fruit remains so pensive – and that’s a moment I want to capture in my glass now. We often talk about how Nature makes the calls in the vineyard; sometimes she doesn’t show her hand until we’re well into the barrel life of a wine. When that happens, it’s a very pleasant surprise.
Only 94 cases made. Wine Enthusiast - 96 points