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2018 Blanc de Noirs, Extra Brut Six Bottle Set (6 x 750 ml)
The Blanc de Noirs Extra Brut is produced for the growing number of enthusiasts who desire a drier sparkling wine for certain occasions. This style of wine is finished with a dosage of between 0.3 - 0.6 g/100 mL of residual sugar, which is about half that of our other brut offerings. Sparkling wine producers across the globe have been able to develop brighter intensity of fruit flavors in the grapes that they grow, and Schramsberg is no exception. Because the cool-climate vineyards we source from produced grapes with high acidity and riper Pinot Noir and Chardonnay characteristics, we are now able to explore lower dosage levels while maintaining superb flavor and balance in the wine.
Blanc de Noirs (white from black) is the counterpart to Blanc de Blancs (white from white). Made primarily from the red grape Pinot Noir, this is a complex, medium-bodied, brut sparkling wine. Schramsberg pioneered the Blanc de Noirs style in the United States, producing the first such commercial American sparkler in 1967. The key to producing this Blanc de Noirs is our sourcing of Pinot Noir grapes from a vast and varied selection of cool-climate vineyards. Pinot Noir from low-yielding Sonoma and Marin coastal vineyards combine with fruit from Carneros and Anderson Valley sites, to develop a sparkling wine with a breadth of fruitful aroma and flavor. Select Chardonnay lots are then added, to give zest and backbone to the blend.
Making a white wine from a red grape requires great carehand-picked fruit, early morning harvest, optimal 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 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.
The long growing season in 2018 revealed a vintage with concentration without being overripe. Despite a warm February, the growing season started off cooler than the past few vintages. A cool spring meant bloom lasted longer than usual, which resulted in a bountiful crop. Summer temperatures were moderate with fewer heat spikes than in recent years. Veraison started later as well, and as a result, harvest started two to three weeks later than in recent years. The resulting fruit exhibited exceptional structure with depth of flavor noticeable brightness.