2014 Juster Vineyard Blanc de Noirs

Juster Vineyards, located just west of the small town of Philo along Highway 128 in Mendocino Countys Anderson Valley, lies across the Navarro River from the impressive Hendy Woods redwood groves. Schramsberg leased and planted the 24.5-acre property in 1998. The vineyard has been dedicated to full organic operations since 2007. Working with local viticulturalist Paul Ardzrooni we have employed no-till practices to reduce erosion and fish friendly farming to protect the areas water supply and wildlife habitats.

Located in the southern corner of Mendocino County, the Anderson Valley AVA is 100 miles north of San Franciscoand about a 90-minute drive northwest of our winery. The appellations unique geography results in daily high and low temperatures that can diverge by 40 or 50 degrees: The valley runs along a northeast-southwest axis (as opposed to the usual north-south) and ends at the ocean, permitting fog and breezes to penetrate further inland, making for an cooler-than-normal inland microclimate. This enables our growers to retain fruitful acidity in line with the sugar and flavor development through long, warm summers. The valleys soils tend to be rich in loam, with differing amounts of rock and gravel.

This Blanc de Noirs, made from the red Pinot Noir grape, is a complex, medium-bodied, brut sparkling wine. Making a white wine from a red grape requires great carehand-picked fruit, early morning harvest, optimal fruit maturity and delicate pressing. A balance of bright flavors, crisp acidity and minimal tannins is achieved. Barrel and malolactic fermentation of wine lots add richness and body. Yeast contact in the bottle harmonizes all the elements together in a mature, toasty style. The youthful fruit character of the wine will develop and soften with additional age in the bottle. With proper storage, this sparkling wine will be delicious for many years, even decades to come.

For the 2014 vintage, winter in Anderson Valley was exceptionally drypart of Californias long drought but the rain arrived in abundance in February. A warm spring laid the groundwork for early budbreak, and the growing season ran ahead of schedule. Pinot noirs grapes showed an agile balance between ripe fruit and lively acidity, thanks to abundant sun and cool evening temperatures.

Tasting notes

This Blanc de Noirs has generous aromas of peach, guava and candied ginger, followed with hints of vanilla and crème caramel. A juicy entry of orange and pink grapefruit give way to mid-palate notes of passion fruit, hibiscus and ginger, carrying vibrant length on the finish.- Winemakers Sean Thompson and Hugh Dvies

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