Pleased enjoy our fourth Pinot Noir from our new estate vineyard.
The new vineyard lies in the same spot as the one Dean, Jane, Henry and Linda McHenry planted in 1972. The old vines produced some extraordinary Pinot Noir such as the 1984 that won numerous awards including best Pinot Noir in the state at the California State Fair, and gold medals for the 1988 and 1989 vintages. We mourned old vineyards the death from Pierces Disease in 1992, but kept the hope alive that someday we could replant. We replanted in 1997, the last summer of our senior partner Chancellor Dean McHenry’s life.
We harvested between September 13 and 16 at 25 degrees Brix, 1.0 total acidity (percent by volume) and 3.2 pH. The primary fermentation lasted nine days and the resulting wine rested for nearly two years in Francois Freres French oak barrels.
This is a delicate and graceful wine. It has a beautiful light color with a soft fruit scent. It has a velvet texture. It reminds one of great Volnay in its tenderness, subtlety, floweriness, and power. It is wonderful now and will get even better with aging.
172 cases produced
$19.50 per bottle
Alc. 13.5 % by volume
Some comments from Pinotfile:
"McHenry Vineyard This producer was a new find for me. I just love the style of Pinot Noir here - full of finesse and modeled after the wines of Volnay in the Cote de Beaune of France. Henry McHenry is an anthropology professor at the University of California Davis and quite a charming man whose personality is reflected in his wines. The McHenry Vineyard on Bonny Doon Road was planted in 1972 by Dean, Jane, Henry and Linda McHenry. The old vines produced numerous awards including best Pinot Noir in the state at the California State Fair. The vineyard succumbed to Pierce’s Disease in 1992, but was replanted in 1997, the last summer of senior partner Chancellor (UC Santa Cruz) Dean McHenry’s life. The 2003 McHenry Estate Vineyard Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir (13.5% alc., 172 cases, $19.50) was aged for nearly two years in Francois Freres oak barrels and a year in bottle before release. The winemaker, Henry McHenry said it best: “A delicate and graceful wine with a soft fruit scent. It has a velvet texture and reminds one of great Volnay in its tenderness, subtlety, and floweriness.” I just flipped over this as well as the 2004 vintage which has yet to be released. This is a perfect example of what Pinot Noir can be, but so rarely is. A lightly colored, elegant wine that is blessed with striking flavor and complexity. The price is just ridiculous considering the quality. Luckily, I bid and won the double magnum of this wine and had Henry sign the label. Sometimes Pinot speaks to you."
We are delighted to offer a wine from the Swan clone block of our vineyard. Joe Swan's Russian River Pinot Noir vineyard became famous for special qualities, and we are fortunate to have that clone growing on its own roots (not graftd onto root stock) in a special place in our vineyard. In 2003 its clusters were exceptionally small with tiny berries bursting with flavor.
We picked on September 12 at 25 degrees Brix, 1.0 total acidity (percent by folume) and 3.2 pH. The wine rested gentley for two years in Francois Freres French oak barrels.
The wine is soft and luscious.
75 cases produced
$25 per bottle
Alc. 14.0 % by volume