Vintage 2014
Wine Type Red
Varietal Pinot Noir
Region Carneros
Winemaker Jon Priest

Etude’s Heirloom Pinot Noir, produced from several heirloom selections of the variety, is dedicated to the celebration and preservation of plant diversity. It exemplifies the singular, superior wines – unusually expressive, concentrated and pure – that issue from original varieties or vine selections chosen for the inherent wine quality they produce.

Source: Etude Estate Vineyards at Grace Benoist Ranch, Carneros, Napa Valley
Varietal Composition: 100% Pinot Noir
Vinification: 100% French oak barrels for 13 months
Clones: Various Heirloom Vine selections
Production: 850 cases

94 Points -

“Similarly colored, the 2014 Pinot Noir Grace Benoist Ranch Heirloom is gorgeous stuff from the Carneros appellation. This deep, rich Pinot Noir boasts tons of currants, smoked earth, dried herbs and floral notes, with more forest floor and autumn leaves notes coming through with time in the glass. Concentrated, layered, and elegant, with fine tannin, it’s a classic, age-worthy Pinot Noir that will be better in another 2-3 years and keep for a decade.” - Jeb Dunnuck, December 2017

Tasting Notes

Our Heirloom Pinot Noir stands apart for its aromatic complexity, underlying structure, persistence and finesse. Rich in lush red fruit, star anise and graham cracker spices, and Orange Pekoe tea, the 2014 is alluring and ample with silky, refined tannins and notable length. Cellaring promises even greater complexity and over time this powerful Pinot Noir will only continue to integrate and improve.

Vineyard Notes

Grown on the Etude Estate Vineyards at Grace Benoist Ranch, the grapes for our Heirloom Pinot Noir come from shy-bearing selections that produce small bunches and even smaller berries. Although some growers hold these vines in low regard due to their extremely low yields, we prize their ability to produce wines that are both expressive of their genetic origins and the unique and varied site on which they’re grown.

Vintage Notes

Despite drought conditions, the 2014 vintage proved to be ideal, with excellent quality reminiscent of 2012. The winter was one of the driest on record in California, but substantial rains in early spring were timely and set up the vines for a strong start. Summer temperatures were milder than expected with no extremes, and after early bud break and veraison, harvest was unusually early in 2014.

Winemaking Notes

The grapes for this wine were handpicked at night to preserve freshness and acidity. They were placed in open-top fermenters for 3-5 days of cold maceration followed by fermentation. A small percentage of the fruit was kept whole cluster during fermentation to add further complexity, buoyancy of aromatics and an element of structure and refinement.  We performed punch downs during the early stages of fermentation with the extraction becoming gentler as the wine became dry, and followed with a quiet extended maceration to help enhance the richness and mouthfeel of the wine. We lightly pressed the wine into small French oak barrels where it rested for 13 months. The wine was bottled with no fining or filtration.