2009 Pinot Noir
December 3, 2010
Our 2009 Pinot Noir is ruby in color, with just a hint of purple. The nose shows classic Sonoma Coast Pinot aromas of cherry and strawberry, with subtle notes of violets, black tea, mint and potpourri. The palate is darker, with black cherry and blackberry dominating, accompanied by a complex array of cranberry, maple, briar, graphite and apple skin flavors. The layers of flavor change continually on the long, persistent finish. Silky tannin and good acidity lend a wonderful mouth-feel, and allow for a variety of food pairings, although we are happiest with a simply grilled rib-eye.
Click award to see letter
This pinot has improved tremendously over a few short months in bottle, but should continue to improve for another year or two, and hold at that level for several more. If you are going to drink it in the near term, we recommend an hour of decanting prior to serving.
The 2009 Hatton Daniels was labeled "Sonoma Coast" for simplicity, but was actually sourced from a single vineyard within the Sonoma Coast, the Robert's Road Vineyard, owned and farmed by the Sangiacomo family. The Sangiacomos are synonymous with high-end Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in Sonoma County, having farmed wine-grapes in Sonoma since 1969.
Robert's Road Vineyard is located in the Petaluma Gap, where fog and cool Pacific air funnel in from the coast, keeping daytime temperatures cool and allowing for the long, even growing season that Pinot Noir demands. Planted in 1998, the vines are starting to develop the complexity that only comes from established vines. We source our Pinot from two different blocks, one planted to Swan clone, which delivers perfumed aromatics and wonderful complexity, and the other planted to Dijon 777, which provides body and plenty of fruit.
Both blocks were hand harvested on the same day, so that we could ferment them together in one vessel. At the winery the clusters were gently de-stemmed, with no crushing of the fruit, and underwent a 7-day cold soak. Once fermentation started the must was pumped over frequently to gently extract color and flavor from the skins, with the occasional punch-down of the cap for further extraction. After 13 days on the skin the finished wine was barreled down into French oak (50% new) where it underwent malolactic fermentation in barrel. The wine was bottled unfined and unfiltered on December 3, 2010 after 13 months in barrel.