2011 Couloir Monument Tree Pinot Noir
A cornerstone of the Couloir portfolio, Monument Tree exhibits a wide fruit profile yet still maintains subtlety, both aromatically and texturally. Sweet pink grapefruit (à la Burgundy) and ripe red fruits lead into spice, fresh cranberry, and rhubarb with hints of cola nut mid-palate. The color of this wine – brilliant, vibrant, and pearlescent –reflects the elegant aromatics. With each taste more generous than the one before, the wine builds to a finish that expresses the site’s clay loam soils, the Dijon clone selection, and the voice of the appellation.
Named for the landmark redwood tree that looms like a proud parent over the vineyard, Monument Tree was planted in 1999 to Dijon clones. The soils are comprised of gravelly clay/loam which lends a unique, site-specific black spice character with a brilliant spine of bright acidity. This low vigor site was originally planted by Napa Valley’s famed Duckhorn Vineyards and is now owned by Twomey Cellars. Situated in the Deep End of Anderson Valley, this is the definition of a true, cool climate vineyard. The east and northeast facing aspects of the vineyard allow the fruit to enjoy morning light, while avoiding the heat of the afternoon sun. This is a quintessential, premiere cru vineyard for Anderson Valley farmed by Ardzrooni Vineyard Management, who also farmed Londer Vineyard and Roma's Vineyard for Couloir Wines.
Each of the three Pinot Noir clones (777, 667 & 115) were hand harvested separately into half-ton picking bins and brought directly to the winery. Dry ice was feathered into the bins to prevent spoilage and oxidation. The bins were placed in cold storage for a 24-hour resting period before processing. All of the fruit was then hand-sorted. Adding a layer of complexity to the final wine, the bright flavor and taste profile of this Pinot Noir comes, in part, from one half of the fruit having been fermented as whole clusters. The grapes received a cold soak for seven days to extract maximum color from the Pinot Noir skins, while the chill prohibited the start of fermentation. The fruit was then removed from refrigeration, warming and activating the native yeasts. One gentle punch down per day ensured minimal tannin extraction from the skins, allowing the stem tannins to provide the wine’s structure. The grapes were then pressed and the wine was gravity fed into seven French oak barrels, three of which were new. The barrels were initially stirred three times over a six-week period. The wine received no racking, nor fining, nor filtering.
Variety 100% Pinot Noir
Vineyard Monument Tree, Anderson Valley
Production 169 cases
Optimal Maturity 2015-2022
Harvested Oct 2
Barrel Aging 11 Months, 40% new French Oak
Winemaker Jon Grant