2014 Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley                           "Solomon Hills Vineyard"

100% Clone 4
Full malolactic fermentation • Lees stirring
Aged 10 months in French oak barrels, 33% new
Three barrels produced • 13.3% Alcohol
95 Points, "Editors Choice" - Matt Kettmann, Wine Enthusiast Magazine
92 Points - Dr. Rusty Gaffney, "The Prince of Pinot"
 
From Matt Kettmann: Along with a fascinating nose, this bottling from the appellation’s westernmost vineyard offers the rounded ripeness of cherimoya, nectarine and white peach but with a laser-sharp line of crushed sea shell and flint minerality alongside scratched lemon skin. The palate rides that chalky line the whole way, offering hints of lime pith, tangerine, sea salt and just enough almond warmth. Editors’ Choice. —M.K.
 
From Rusty Gaffney: Moderately light golden yellow color in the glass. Aromatically pleasing with scents of yellow apple, yellow peach and brioche. Slightly creamy on the palate, with flavors of lemon, peach, honey, baking spices and toast. Highly flavorful, with a good acid spine, and a cleansing finish.
 

$34.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2014 Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley "Solomon Hills Vineyard"

33% Dijon 115 • 33% Dijon 667 • 33% Pommard 5
25% whole cluster fermentation • Native Yeasts
Aged 10 months in French oak barrels, 20% new
Ten barrels produced • 13.5% Alcohol
94 Points - Matt Kettmann, WIne Enthusiast Magazine
 

From Matt Kettmann: The eponymous winemaker of this brand is based in San Francisco, from which, in this bottling, he turns out a stunner. Focused, intense, energetic and yet delicate, the nose is full of just-ripe raspberries, bay leaf, thyme, eucalyptus and chipped slate. A sip reveals crushed herbs galore, from oregano to anise, set against tart pomegranate and red plums. Menthol shows on the finish. —M.K.

$43.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2014 Pinot Noir Sta. Rita Hills "Fiddlestix Vineyard"

60% Dijon 115 • 20% Dijon 113 • 20% Dijon 667
20% whole cluster fermentation
Aged 10 months in French oak barrels, 20% new
Five barrels produced • 14.2% Alcohol
90 Points - Matt Kettmann, Wine Enthusiast Magazine
92 Points - Dr. Rusty Gaffney, "The Prince of Pinot"
 

From Matt Kettmann: This is a very light expression of the grape from a San Francisco-based producer, with thyme, chaparral, cranberry, tart pomegranate juice and wet clay on the nose. The palate shows light, tangy cherry juice, fennel, crushed olive and peppery spice. —M.K.

From Rusty Gaffney: Moderately light cherry red hue in the glass. Aromas of cherry, strawberry and sandalwood lead to a mid weight flavored wine featuring dark red cherry, cranberry, strawberry and raspberry fruits complimented by a hint of spice, The tannins are tame, the wine is nicely balanced, and the finish is pleasantly exuberant.

$43.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2013 Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley                           "Solomon Hills Vineyard"

100% Clone 4 Native yeasts
Full malolactic fermentation • Lees stirring
Aged 10 months in French oak barrels, 40% new
Five barrels produced • 14.0% Alcohol
92 Points - Matt Kettmann, Wine Enthusiast Magazine
92 Points - Dr. Rusty Gaffney, "The Prince of Pinot"
 
Tasting notes: This is my very first Chardonnay and I made it about as simply as you can. That said, there’s nothing simple about this wine! Pressed directly into barrels, it went through both primary and secondary fermentation on its own. All in all, this was fermenting for 8-9 months non-stop. I just stirred the lees every two weeks and that was about it! It’s a total olfactory wine. The powerful nose contains hints of crisp pineapple, melty banana, green apple, vanilla bean, creme brulee and that classic marine-influenced Santa Maria je ne sais qois that is synonymous with the region. On the palette, the wine pays off the nose perfectly with an added twist of Meyer lemon and peach juice to boot. Full malolactic fermentation added a plushness up front, but there’s great acid on this wine that carries it through and builds to a nice crisp snap on the finish, which just goes on and on and on. Thine lips shalt smack!

$34.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2013 Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley "Solomon Hills Vineyard"

33% Dijon 115 • 33% Dijon 667 • 33% Pommard 5
25% whole cluster fermentation
Aged 10 months in French oak barrels, 20% new
Five barrels produced • 14.2% Alcohol
93 Points "Editors Choice" - Matt Kettmann, WIne Enthusiast Magazine
91 Points - Dr. Rusty Gaffney, "The Prince of Pinot"
 

Tasting notes: I have really fallen in love with this vineyard. There’s this unmistakeable characteristic about wines made from this site that is uniquely Solomon Hills. In 2013, I added an extra clone to the mix which really gave this wine an extra level of complexity and balance. And it also made it a little addictive too. As always, the nose explodes right out of the glass, unleashing aromas of rich red berries, black licorice, sandalwood, fresh flowers, black tea with lemon and mushroomy earth. On the palette, I’m getting garden strawberries, bing cherries, spice cake, orange marmalade, tea and underlying wet forest floor. The wine has a beautiful light garnet color, which alludes to its medium-light bodied character and perfect balance. The wine starts off with a bright and showy mouthfeel, but morphs into something much more complex as an effervescent acidity takes over with a nice snap at the end. This wine lingers on the tongue 4 evah!

$43.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2013 Pinot Noir Sta. Rita Hills "Fiddlestix Vineyard"

75% Dijon 115 • 25% Pommard 5
20% whole cluster fermentation
Aged nine months in French oak barrels, 20% new
Five barrels produced • 14.0% Alcohol
91 Points - Matt Kettmann, Wine Enthusiast Magazine
91 Points - Dr. Rusty Gaffney, "The Prince of Pinot"
 

Tasting notes: There’s a reason I started with this vineyard when I made my very first wine. Fiddlestix just seems to deliver something special every single year. Welcome to this year’s installment! On the nose there’s just-ripe strawberry, wild cherries jubilee, anisette, dark roses, cigar box and just a touch of leather. On the palette, the strawberries and wild cherries remain, joined by ripe currant, candied raspberry, caramelized vanilla, and crushed flowers. This is a lighter-bodied wine than the past couple vintages, but is still quite rich with a round, smooth, full-bodied mouthfeel that envelopes your palette which yields to a cascade of sparkling acid. The finish just seems to...well...never finish.

$43.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2012 Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley "Solomon Hills Vineyard"

50% Dijon clone 115, 50% Pommard clone 5 33% whole cluster fermentation
Aged nine months in French oak barrels, 17% new • Six barrels produced • 14.2% Alcohol
92 Points - Steve Heimoff, Wine Enthusiast Magazine
90 Points - Dr. Rusty Gaffney, "The Prince of Pinot"
 

Tasting notes: Solomon Hills Vineyard is located about seven miles from the ocean just outside the city of Orcutt in Santa Barbara County. The maritime influence combined with ocean floor sandy loam soil results in wines with bright fruit, good balance, crisp acidity and what is known as "Santa Maria spice". The lively nose jumps out of the glass, revealing a tightly-knit profile of fresh cherries, strawberries, hazelnuts, spice cake, violet and rose petal. The smooth, silky, light-bodied mouthfeel delivers notes of firm red strawberry, raspberry and cherry mixed with dashes of currant, caramelized orange peel, saddle leather, vanilla and gingerbread cookies. Delicate tannins transition to a sparkle of acidity on the finish. Beware...this wine goes down a little too easy.

$43.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2012 Pinot Noir Sta. Rita Hills "Fiddlestix Vineyard"

75% Dijon clone 115, 25% Pommard clone 5 33% whole cluster fermentation
Aged nine months in French oak barrels, 20% new • Five barrels produced • 14.5% Alcohol
92 Points, "Cellar Selection"- Steve Heimoff, Wine Enthusiast Magazine
91 Points - Dr. Rusty Gaffney, "The Prince of Pinot"
 

Tasting notes: Sourced from the same incredible vineyard as my previous wines, the 2012 Fiddlestix Vineyard Pinot Noir is all Sta. Rita Hills. The nose features a rich combination of black cherries, fresh raspberries, wet forest, anisette and rose garden. The medium-bodied mouthfeel is firm, rich and round, reminding me of the texture of liquidized sour hard candy. On the palette, rich tones of sour dark cherries, red berries and plum mix with flourishes of sweet lemon rind, rhubarb pie, eastern spices and jasmine tea. The generous acid at the end carries a finish that goes on and on. This is a powerful wine that will improve with cellar age. If you just can't wait, decanting is recommended.

$43.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2011 Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir - Sold out!

Dijon clones 113, 115, 667
Aged nine months in French oak barrels, 33% new
75 cases produced
14.5% Alcohol

Rated 92 Points Wine Enthusiast

Matt Kettmann's "Wine of the Week" in Santa Barbara Independent 02.07.13

Tasting notes: This wine is everything I love about the Sta. Rita Hills. The nose is incredible. Ripe black cherry, fresh, firm strawberry and rose petal are all there. But there's some additional complexity too. I'm also picking up soft leather, wet Sierra granite and toasted nuts. A medium-bodied mouth feel has good structure and firmness, but is plush just around the edges. On the palette, rich tones of dark cherries and plum contrast with barely-ripe red berries and cranberries mixed with dashes of caramelized orange peel, tangy boysenberry pie, spice cookies and black tea. Structured tannins transition to a sparkling, crisp acidity on the finish. Yum.

$38.00/bottle

(10% discount on case purchases)

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2010 Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir - Sold Out!

Dijon clones 113, 115, 667
Aged nine months in French oak barrels, 45% new
24.5 cases produced
14.5% Alcohol

Tasting notes: There’s a part of me that hopes nobody buys this wine, so I can have it all to myself. This is classic Santa Rita Hills Pinot Noir made with grapes sourced from one of the most famous vineyards in the area. The nose of black cherry, cranberry and crushed dried flowers jumps out of the glass. Medium-bodied, yet indulgent mouthfeel gives way to rich tones of dark cherries, blackberries and plum with a splash of spice cake on the palette. Soft tannins transition to a glimmer of subtle acidity on the finish. Wow.