Pinot Noir expresses the place it was grown to a degree like no other wine grape. The varietal offers a delicate transparency that when pursued correctly, effortlessly reveals its origins. After 30 years of crafting Pinot Noir in Carneros, Etude continues its study of this captivating varietal and its varying expressions in some of the New World’s most renowned Pinot-producing regions.
Ellenbach Vineyard sits just four miles from the Pacific Ocean in Annapolis, the northernmost part of the “true” Sonoma Coast region. Located on steep, remote, coastal hillsides, Ellenbach is just above the fog line and defined by its proximity to the ocean and unique 800 feet elevation. Very cool nights allow for ideal preservation of acidity and long, intense, sunny days permit grapes to ripen slowly and evenly. A variety of clones are planted in distinctive Goldridge soil, which differs from the region’s tilted plates and volcanic soils. These well-draining Goldridge soils combined with the vineyard’s steep hillsides further the vines struggle, which adds complexity and concentration to the resulting wines.
Crafted with the same minimal winemaking techniques as Etude’s celebrated Carneros Pinot Noirs, each regional wine purely reflects the unique essence and character of its regional vineyard and still maintains Etude’s hallmarks of aromatic intrigue, vibrancy of expression and depth in ageability.
Our 2014 Ellenbach Pinot Noir stands out for its depth, structure and concentration of fruit. The nose intrigues with lush red cherry, reminiscent of kirsh and cherries jubilee. High notes of lilac and violets add complexity of the bouquet. On the palate, the rich fruit, bright acidity and sensuous tannins suggest that the wine will open up beautifully over the next several years.