Raspberry, red cherry and aromatics of freshly-cut flowers emerge from the 2017 Mother Rock Pinot Noir. Powdery tannins balance with linear acidity to provide structure for the fruit to shine. This is a concentrated wine of intense focus, with the cleanse of wet slate as the wine finishes on the palate.
We hand-picked each block and delivered firm, cool clusters to the winery before sunrise. We then hand-sorted and de-stemmed the fruit before transferring to tank, where five to seven days of cold maceration preceded more than two weeks of 100% native yeast fermentation. The free run wine was transferred to 67% new French oak for 15 months of aging.
2017 saw the largest accumulated rainfall in recent history at Wayfarer, 86 inches in total. Much of that rainfall occurred in January and February, while the vines were dormant. Wayfarer enjoyed moderate temperatures and clear skies through April and into May. This allowed for steady vine growth and consistent bloom, beginning at the end of May. June encountered one of the warmer stretches on record for the month. After a very wet winter, this proved to be a nice balance for the vines, helping to dry the wet soils and tame what could have been substantial vigor. The warmth continued through the summer, bringing nice texture to the fruit. Harvest began on September 6th with block 6. As harvest continued through September, temperatures became cooler, allowing the vines to ripen gradually. Not wanting to rush the vines, we patiently waited and wrapped up harvest in early October.
Dijon 777, Mount Eden
Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com, June 2019
A mix of clones 37 and 777 from shallower, rocky soils, the 2017 Pinot Noir Mother Rock was mostly destemmed and brought up all in 50-60% new French oak. Not harvested until October 2, it offers a more ruby color as well as a Burgundian profile in its darker cherry, earth, spice, and underbrush aromas and flavors. More medium-bodied, silky and elegant, it's lightly textured, has moderate tannins, beautiful balance, and a clean finish. It shines for its incredible purity and elegance more than power and richness, and should evolve beautifully for over a decade.
Erin Brooks, Wine Advocate, December 2019
The 2017 Pinot Noir Mother Rock is medium ruby-purple in color with a soft nose of strawberry and raspberry preserves, spiced cranberry sauce, rhubarb and pomegranate with stewed black tea leaves, moss-covered bark, crushed stone and rose petal with a classy framing of new oak spice. Medium-bodied, it has wonderfully concentrated, spiced fruits in the mouth with a sturdy frame of grainy tannins and juicy freshness, finishing very long and full of flavor.
Antonio Galloni, Vinous, April 2020
The 2017 Pinot Noir Mother Rock emerges from a blend of east-facing parcels on 30-degree slopes with shallow soils. It is, not surprisingly, one of the more reticent Pinots in this range. Sweet red cherry, white pepper, chalk and mint give the Mother Rock its striking aromatic top notes and brightness. This is an especially focused, driven style.
- Vinted by Bibiana González Rave, blended by Todd Kohn
- Wayfarer Vineyard, Fort Ross-Seaview, Sonoma Coast
- Double guyot
- Vine Yield:
- Less than 3lbs per vine
- October 2, 2017
- December 10, 2018
- September 2020
- 100% Pinot Noir
- Cases Produced: