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2017 Peter Michael Pinot Noir ‘Caprice’ Ft. Ross-Seaview

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Winemaker Notes: To the eye, the 2017 Le Caprice offers a red ruby color with bright crimson highlights. The wine shows intense aromas of raspberry liqueur, red cherry and blackberry mixed with Russian leather, violet and graphite. The palate is expressive and delivers Griotte cherry, sandalwood, raspberry, wild strawberry, forest floor, hazelnut, and leather, with a background of raspberry liqueur. The texture is fresh, round, and mineral driven. The wine is already expressive and will continue to develop for at least a decade.

Named for the Pinot Noir grape as a reference to its capricious and somewhat demanding disposition. Le Caprice embodies the challenge of growing this varietal well, and the ethereal and glorious elements that we strive to capture. This wine is made from grapes grown in the steepest of our Sonoma Coast vineyards, with a slightly eastern aspect and a resulting decrease in the cool maritime influences. Le Caprice is the most fruit-forward of our three estate Pinot Noirs.

VINTAGE NOTES The 2017 growing season began with abundant rainfall, ending California’s long drought. Spring weather was cool, but dry, resulting in an extended blooming period. The vines were vigorous thanks to the winter rains. Aggressive canopy management and fruit thinning brought the crop into optimal balance. Warmer than normal conditions after veraison accelerated ripening and required careful irrigation to mitigate dehydration. A return of cooler conditions allowed our Pinot Noir to slowly reach perfect ripeness. Picking was gradual and methodical, yielding a slightly larger than normal harvest. The vintage produced rich, forward Pinot Noirs that will show well young, but possess the structure to age.

WINEGROWING NOTES The name ‘Le Caprice,’ as in capricious, is an ode to the fickle nature of the Pinot Noir grape. Situated between 1,025 and 1,450 feet above sea level on steep mountain slopes, some exceeding fifty percent in grade, the vineyard faces East and North-East. It benefits from both the cooling influence of the Pacific Ocean and the mild sunny mountain climate. The soil of the vineyard is a composite of clay, silt and volcanic gravels, which help the wine display polished tannins, body and a hint of graphite-minerality. Le Caprice is the fruitiest of our trio of estate Pinot Noir vineyards.


Jeb Dunnuck - "Always the first vineyard picked, the 2017 Pinot Noir Le Caprice has a Volnay-like perfume of ripe strawberries, blackberries, violets, and cedary spice. It’s incredibly complex, medium to full-bodied, has a terrific sense of elegance, and a great finish. This is a beautiful Pinot Noir from the Fort Ross-Seaview appellation that’s already hard to resist yet should easily evolve for at least a decade. "

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate - "This label comes from Fort Ross-Seaview AVA, planted at 1,000-1,400 feet elevation to a “suitcase” clone on a soil type of clay with basalt rocks. Medium ruby-purple in color, the 2017 Pinot Noir le Caprice comes roaring out of the glass with pronounced redcurrants, warm cranberries and black cherries scents plus hints of violets, rhubarb and star anise with wafts of red roses, black tea and wild sage. Medium-bodied, the palate has a fantastic structure of firm, finely grained tannins with bold freshness supporting the incredibly energetic and expressive red berries and black cherries layers, finishing long and perfumed. Impressive! 1,422 cases were made."

James Suckling - "Really fun aromas of crushed berries, green tea, flowers and raw meat, all jumping out of the glass. Pure and focused. Tight and creamy. Needs time to open and develop. Try after 2025."

More Information
Country USA - California
Region Sonoma
Vintage 2017
Winery Peter Michael Winery
Grape Varietals Pinot Noir
Size 750 milliliter
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