2021 Stewart Ranch Pinot Noir
The Stewart Ranch vineyard in Carneros has a cool breezy climate that brings out the depth and finesse of the Pinot Noir grape. Planted with the 115 clone on 101-14, and utilizing a 5 x 8 spacing, Stewart is on a peninsula in the Estuary and keeps its leaves in a stoic manner most years so that the fruit can stay shaded in the middle of the day. We had low winter rains, with budbreak in mid-March, and flowering in mid-May. 50% Veraison was July 19, and the season unfolded with only moderate heat spikes and cool temperatures in the mornings. We brought in the Pinot Noir in 2 lots. The first lot was 3 tons at 22 Brix on August 24, and the second lot was 5 tons on August 31 at 25.5 Brix. We gave both Pinot Noir lots 4 days of cold soak and fermentation with RB2 yeast. Both were in open top tanks, so we used mostly punch downs on the caps. After 12 days, each was pressed off, and went to barrel dry a few days later, so we could add malolactic bacteria and let the wine relax in its new oak. The wines developed as we had predicted, with the earlier pick having delicate characters, and the second having deeper, more powerful elements. The 2021 Stewart Ranch Pinot Noir has welcoming aromas of wild cherry, clove, baking spices and elderberry. The palate is graceful and balanced, with savory spicy plum, tart red currant, and a satiny texture on the finish.
Vintage: 2021 | Variety: Pinot Noir | Appellation: Carneros | Alcohol %: 14.8