The Clos Pepe Vineyard in Santa Barbara's Sta. Rita Hills AVA is undoubtedly one of our most famous vineyards. Sometimes fame is undeserved and sometimes it is fleeting, but neither of those is anywhere close to true when it comes to Clos Pepe. This vineyard is the real deal and we've been incredibly fortunate to have worked with fruit from Clos Pepe since 2000.
We source fruit from 3 different sections of Clos Pepe, two of them are planted to 115 clone with one section planted to Pommard. While this clonal difference is interesting, the most fascinating aspect is the location of the grapes within the vineyard, with the 115 clone being the earliest ripening section and also the latest ripening section. In 2014 these sections ripened over 3 weeks apart! This combination of earlier, middle, and later ripening sections makes for a far more interesting wine with different sections doing better in some years than others. In what was generally an earlier ripening year like 2014, the lower, later section performed extremely well and made up a higher percentage of the blend than is normal. Overall, this sectional diversity allows us to produce a more consistently interesting Pinot and that is certainly the case in 2014 where Clos Pepe shows the complexity that comes from the longer hang time that the later ripening section provided.
Pressed boysenberry aromas highlight simultaneously dark and fresh fruit on the nose of this bottling by Adam Lee, which also conveys Earl Grey tea, lavender, hibiscus and crushed pencils. The palate picks up the same tack, offering delicate fruits and florals, from cranberry to elderflower.
Pleasantly rich and elegant without being weighty, with plum, blueberry and blackberry flavors accented by spice and light oak hints. An exciting and enjoyable style. Drink now. 688 cases made.