Golden Mean is a union of contrasts: the earthy aromatics and powerful structure of the Pommard clone married with the elegance and alluring perfume of the Swan clone. This wine is an aromatic journey, beginning with floral notes of magnolia and lavender, leading to vibrant fruit tones of cranberry and mandarin, finishing with warm garden scents of marjoram and fresh anise. The velvet mouthfeel glides through a mid-palate rich with raspberries, rose hips and hints of black pepper and cedar. Ready to savor upon release, this wine will age beautifully for another 10-15 years.
Updated tasting notes :
August 2022: Fresh violets, raspberry and pomegranate knit together with rich strawberry rhubarb jam. The acidity is voluminous and the wine finishes with juicy length on the palate. The 2013 is the sexiest wine in our cellar right now.
We hand-picked and hand-sorted the fruit, reserving 35% for whole-cluster fermentation. The remaining berries were then de-stemmed and hand-sorted again before transfer to tank. Five to seven days of cold maceration preceded more than two weeks of 100% native yeast fermentation. The fruit was then gently pressed, its free-run juice transferred to 54% new French oak barrels for 15 months of aging.
The 2013 growing season was initially noted for its 40%-below-average rainfall amidst California’s escalating drought. However, the vintage will ultimately be remembered for its intense, concentrated flavors and exceptional quality across every vineyard block. Mild spring temperatures beckoned bud break as normal beginning March 25th with the Swan Clone on the west-facing slope of Block 20. While a touch of gentle spring rain accelerated canopy growth, strategic shoot positioning and leaf removal afforded ideal air circulation and sun exposure for the beautifully formed clusters. Veraison began on July 26th and harvest began September 4th with Block 20 and finished with Block 22 on September 17th.
Blocks Map5, 20, 22, 24, 26a
Pommard 4, Pommard 5, Swan
James Suckling, JAMESSUCKLING.COM, May 2017
Lightening acidity here with vibrant and ripe fruit that gives depth and beauty. Wonderful verve to this well-crafted pinot. Such energy. Drink or hold.
Virginie Boone, Wine Enthusiast, December 2015
Lush and velvety, this wine offers big, dark cherry flavor around a tangy minerality. From three vineyard blocks planted to Pommard and Swan clones, it balances opposites in the way full-bodied luxuriousness meets acidity-driven juiciness, creating a desire for more. Let this wine open in the glass or cellar through 2023. "Cellar Selection"
Antonio Galloni, Vinous, January 2015
The 2013 Pinot Noir Golden Mean is all about exuberance. Juicy dark cherries, plums, lavender and cloves burst from the glass as this resonant, radiant Pinot shows off its considerable personality and pedigree. The combination of Swan and Pommard clones here is hugely appealing. Exotic floral and spice notes add the final layers of nuance. Winemaker Bibiana Gonzalez-Rave was done with 35% whole clusters. Once again, the Golden Mean is superb.
Doug Wilder, Purely Domestic Wine Report, March 2015
Pinot Noir Golden Mean is 35% whole cluster and comprised of 75% Pommard, and 25% Swan clone. The nose is mint, ripe cherry, plum, chocolate powder, graphite and golden stone fruit skin. The palate is firm and lively on entry with a core of beautifully delineated structure of cherry, raspberry and acidity. The finish lasts a full two minutes. Drink 2015 – 2023.
- Bibiana González Rave
- Wayfarer Vineyard, Fort Ross-Seaview, Sonoma Coast
- Double Guyot
- Vine Yield:
- Less than 3 pounds
- September 4 – September 17, 2013
- December 17, 2014
- Spring 2016
- 100% Pinot Noir
- 6.3 g/l
- Cases Produced:
- 520 cases