2010 Pinot Noir, Pastorale Vineyard
Winemaker Notes A Pinot Noir with heady aromas of cherry, blackberry, savory cured meats, dried herbs and earth. This wine coats the palate with sweet red cherry and lush dark chocolate with hints of spices and violet. Seamless tannin and creamy texture balance the acidity for a long, round finish.
Winemaking Data This special bottling from the Pastorale Vineyard showcases the distinct terroir characteristics of this region. Three blocks, two planted to Calera and the other clone 777, were fermented separately. 80% of the fruit was handselected and whole cluster fermented in two open-top oak tanks and 20% was whole berry fermented in stainless steel without macerations for the first week, followed by regular punch downs until the desired texture was achieved. The result is a silky, concentrated wine with a distinct minerality and spice element unique to the western Sonoma Coast.
The 2010 season started with modest rainfall and cool to moderate daytime temperatures. Budbreak was nearly complete in the Pinot Noir vineyards by the middle of March. The unusually extended frost season lasted from April into late May but caused little damage throughout the Pinot Noir vineyards, due to the elevation and hillside slope. Cold air naturally continued its journey to the valley below. Bloom was completed by early June. Veraison began the second week of August and the majority of all blocks were completed by August 25th. The quality of the grapes looked excellent leading up to harvest and a warming trend in the latter half of September completed the ripening needed throughout the vineyards. Picking began on September
28th and finished well before the late October heavy rains descended on the region.
The 2010 Pinot Noir growing season was slow and cool, producing exceptional fruit with uniform sugar and acid levels, making for ideal natural winemaking conditions. The finished wines are balanced and fresh with a distinctly Freestone spice element.
94 Points - Wine Enthusiast
This is a very big Pinot Noir, proudly showing off its muscles. Few Pinots anywhere achieve this depth of fruit. It floods the palate with the essence of raspberry and cherry, while plenty of new French oak brings in even richer notes of toast and butterscotch. despite the richness, it has a keen, silky vibrance. Although it is fine and impressive, it needs 5-6 years to knit together, settle down and get a little earthy. (Dec. 2012)
94 Points - Antonio Galloni, Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate
Savory herbs, mint, licorice and sweet cherries emerge from the 2010 Pinoy Noir Estate Pastorale Vineyard. A beautifully delineated, mid-weight Pinot, the Pastorale impresses for its fabulous balance and pure personality. The 2010 is bright and focused from start to finish. Savory herbs and floral notes reappear on the finish, adding lift and finesse. It is a lovely showing from Phelps. (Apr. 2013)
Tasting Notes Download Tasting Notes (pdf)
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Blend and Grape Sources 100% estate-grown Pinot Noir from our Pastorale Vineyard.
Appellation Sonoma Coast
Harvest Dates September 28-30, 2010
Aging/Cooperage 16 months in 60% new and 40% two-to three-year-old French oak barrels before bottling in February 2012.