Working closely with Sierra Madre’s owners Doug and Jan Circle, Rob and Diana Jensen and Director of Winemaking, Bill Brosseau have created a special Pinot Noir from this great vineyard. The Sierra Madre Vineyard is the most northern estate in the Santa Maria Valley. Only fifteen miles from the coast, the unique marine influences here make for an exceptionally long growing season. Originally planted in 1971, the Sierra Madre Vineyard is home to sixty-one acres of Pinot Noir, eight of which have been designated as Testarossa’s. Clones are Dijon 667 and 777. The site sits on sandy, garry soil at 215 feet elevation. The vineyard is certified Sustainable for its conscientious viticultural practices by CCVT.
The 2011 growing season at Sierra Madre was one of the coolest and wettest on record. The Santa Maria Valley was spared much of the fall rains that hit other growng districts; Pinot Noir was picked fairly early, once full phenolic ripeness had been achieved. This 2011 release is our fourth vintage from this exceptional property and reflects the cool year in its complex bright fruit, spice, and acidity profile.
Upon arrival at the winery, the fruit was carefully hand sorted, de-stemmed and allowed an extended cold soak. A gentle gravity flow process is used throughout the winery. The whole berries went through primary fermentation in our custom open top fermenters. The free run wine was then racked into French oak, fifty percent being new. This Pinot Noir was allowed ten months of barrel aging prior to bottling. Fourteen barrels were produced.