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2015 Fox Den Vineyard Pinot Noir 1.5L

Green Valley of Russian River Valley

2015 Fox Den Vineyard Pinot Noir 1.5L
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/ 1.5 L bottle
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Wine Specs
Pinot Noir
Green Valley of Russian River Valley
Vineyard Designation
Fox Den Vineyard
6.8 g/L
16 months in French oak (55% new)
Open top fermentation, cold soak, punch down
Bottling Date
February 2017
Alcohol %
Wine Profile
Tasting Notes
Our harvest at Fox Den was down by half in 2015 due to the wet weather during pollination, giving us a tiny and extra concentrated crop. That concentration is immediately evident when you put your nose in the glass: the rich, sweet cherry nose of our 2015 Fox Den Pinot draws you in its aromatherapy embrace, making you anxious to dive into the glass. Pretty notes of violet and bay leaf add layers of complexity. The energetic mouth leads with red raspberry, strawberry, and pomegranate, framed by dark cherry accents. The wine finishes long and fresh, with a touch of toasted caramel at the end.
5 Stars: Restaurant Wine 95: Wine Enthusiast 93: Jeb Dunnack 93: Planet Grape 92+: Robert Parker, Wine Advocate 92: Pinotfile 91:Wine & Spirits 90: Connoisseurs' Guide
Excellent: "BiggerThanYourHead" - "You could eat the bouquet with a spoon: black and red cherries and plums enveloped in lilac and lavender, sandalwood and sassafras, new leather and a hint of loam; a few moments unfurl notes of wood-smoke, cigarette paper and talc. A real beauty, the wine is sleek and lithe on the palate, propelled by throbbing acidity and spice-infused black fruit flavors; it gathers woodsy underbrush elements as the minutes pass and concludes with a fairly high-toned, austere finish." - Frederick Koeppel
Vineyard Notes
Fox Den Vineyard is perched on top of Stoetz Ridge, at the western border of Green Valley and just above the town of Occidental. The Goldridge sandy loam soil here is extremely sandy since this ridge is old pushed-up sea bottom, which makes for low vigor vines, slow ripening, and beautifully floral and fruit driven wine. Here on the hill, it’s frequently a touch warmer than the bottom of the valley, but it’s still always among the last harvested and highest in natural acidity of our pinots. Dan and Steve planted the spot together in 2002, and Dan has been crafting the wine since 2004. The eight acres is split into three clones: 667 for vivid fruit, 777 for chewy tannins and 115 for brightness and floral aromatics. For the vineyard designated wine, the exact blend between them will vary each year, but the result is always a wine with sweet, lush cherry/strawberry fruit and great natural acidity. This beautiful site is the home of Ed and Sue Smith, old friends who now lovingly oversee their 8 acres of beautifully farmed fruit.
Winemaker Notes
At Dutton-Goldfield, our pinot is hand sorted and destemmed into small open top fermenters and the must is then cold-soaked for 5 days to gently extract color, spice and fruit characters, while mitigating harsher tannins. The three blocks at Fox Den were fermented and barreled separately to optimize what we most love about each, then blended to our tastes in March of 2016. The core of the 2015 is the plush, more strawberry 777, then half as much of the blackberry, focused 667 clone. One of the pleasures of the spring blending is getting to hone barrel choices. Fox Den is all about the floral notes of Remond Trancais, but Taransaud holds down the bass tones, and Rousseau adds structure.
Food Pairing Notes
A creamy rabbit pâté would make an excellent foil to the perky red fruit, as would pepper-crusted pork tenderloin or grilled arctic char.