The 2021 Pinot Noir is pure and focused with brightness and stunning structure. On the nose, raspberry, tart cherry and cassis merge with notes of violets, orange spice and a burst of fresh basil. Fine, chalky tannins and hints of crushed cacao underlie the brilliant red fruits and florals. The density, complexity and persistent minerality of this wine lead into a finish that lasts and lasts. The 2021s will age gracefully for many years.
Each block was picked by hand at night, and firm, cool clusters were delivered to the winery before sunrise. We hand-sorted the fruit and reserved 4% for whole-cluster fermentation. The remainder of the fruit was destemmed before we transferred it into stainless steel tanks for five to ten days of cold maceration. Fermentation was guided by native yeast, and hand punch downs were tailored to how each tank tasted each day. The free run wine aged in French oak barrels, 55% new, for 15 months prior to bottling.
2021 was a dry, warm, even vintage, giving us wines with great intensity and harmony. Though we experienced record-low rainfall of 20 inches, a long way from our 65-inch average, it was plenty to fill our pond and irrigate our vines throughout the season. Budbreak occurred on the early side due to an unusually dry, warm winter, and this early trend continued throughout the season. Spring and summer remained dry and warm, though temperatures never spiked. This consistency, along with bountiful sunlight, allowed for even ripening across the vineyard. It was a smooth growing season and an ideal harvest, with all fruit picked at just the right moment and coming into the winery in a steady stream. The wines are remarkably dense and complex, with lots of structure, energy and delicate aromatics.
Blocks3, 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 16, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26a, 30
Bacigalupi Old Wente, Dijon 115, 667 and 777, Hirsch, Hyde Old Wente, Mount Eden, Pommard 4 and 5, Swan, Wayfarer
Antonio Galloni, Vinous, January 2023
The 2021 Pinot Noir Estate is a terrific introduction to this range. Crushed red berry fruit, spice, mint and blood orange lend nuance to this very pretty, deep Pinot Noir from Wayfarer. In this tasting the Estate comes across as pretty tight, but it was only bottled a month ago, so I remain quite optimistic about its prospects.
- Todd Kohn
- Wayfarer Vineyard, Fort Ross-Seaview, Sonoma
- Double guyot
- Vine Yield:
- 3.02 pounds per vine
- September 3-18, 2021
- December 13, 2022
- Spring 2023
- 100% Pinot Noir
- 5.9 g/L
- Cases Produced: