Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley – 2013
We are dedicated to growing and producing distinctive Sauvignon Blanc from our Grieve Family estate vineyard located in a unique part of Napa called Lovall Valley. This valley is the coolest viticultural area in Napa County and sits just above Carneros, straddling the Sonoma/Napa county line between the towns of Sonoma and Napa.
We double-farm our vineyard, treating the north side of the vine differently from the south side due to the vineyard’s east/west row orientation and Sauvignon Blanc’s need for some sun exposure to achieve the best flavors. We also harvest twice to maximize the flavor intensity of each cluster picked. This process is difficult, labor intensive and expensive, but it allows us to make the best possible wine.
- Size: 5.93 acres of clone 3, 4.70 acres of clone 376
- Vine Age: 14 years
- Elevation: 650 feet
- Density: 1,089 vines/acre
The drought continued in 2013, bringing about an early spring and very good conditions for flowering and fruit set. We had two severe frosts in late May, well after the norm. The summer was warm and uneventful, leading to a great harvest in early and mid-September, just a bit earlier than 2012.
The First PickWe harvested the south side of clone 3 vines on September 13, picking only the sun-kissed clusters. The resulting juice was amazingly high in natural acidity, and the wine was fermented in a stainless steel tank along with both new and once-used Orion French barrels.
The Second PickVery warm weather proceeded after the first pick, hastening our second pick only one week later. We harvested the remaining north side of clone 3 and just a bit of clone 376 at less than two brix higher sugar, yet the resulting juice had the distinctive Grieve stone fruit characters. Fermentation was in concrete egg and French oak barrels.
- Harvest Date(s): September 13 and 20
- Yields: 2.21 tons/acre
- Brix: 23.3° and 24.8°
- Fermentation: 54% stainless steel, 34% French oak, 12% concrete egg
- Aging: 8 months: 28% in new French oak, 36% in once-used French oak, 20% in stainless steel, 16% in concrete egg
Varietal Composition: 100% Sauvignon Blanc
Clonal Composition: 87% clone 3, 13% clone 376
Final Blend: 47% first pick, 53% second pick
Cases Produced: 923 (12/750ml)
The final blend is composed of portions of all 11 cuvées that we fermented and aged separately. The wine has the distinctive yin and yang of bright acidity and lift to the nose from the first pick, and the richness and stone fruit characters from the second harvest. It shows honeydew melon, grapefruit and apricot notes on the nose and the addition of apricot and peach on the palate with hints of spring flowers. The bright acidity, combined with the richness of the stone fruit, create a wine that explodes in the glass and on the palate!
Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley – 2013 – 91 points – Wine Enthusiast
"From the Lovall Valley section of the Napa Valley … this lovely wine is awash in tropical mango, with lilts of pear and vanilla. Creamy, it’s made in a fuller-bodied style ... offering balance and elegance, finishing with a squeeze of grapefruit."