The La Petite Etoile ("The Little Star") Vineyard is located in Sonoma’s Russian River Valley where the cool microclimate and shallow soils produce vibrant Pinot Noir with complexity and richness. Chateau St. Jean purchased this 44-acre ranch near Windsor in 1988, having farmed the vineyard since 1978. Half of the vineyard is planted to Pinot Noir and half to Sauvignon Blanc. The Pinot Noir was planted in 2000 and 2001. The vineyard consists of shallow, gravelly and sandy loam soils with tight clay subsoil on rolling hillsides. 56% of this Pinot Noir comes from clone 115 while 44% is from clone 459.
After primary fermentation in small lots, the wine was drained from the skins and sent to barrel the next day. The malolactic fermentation occurred in the barrels and lasted for a month. The grapes were carefully handled through out the winemaking process to retain all of the fruit character from the vineyard and develop richness and integration with the oak components. The wine was aged 14 months in 100% French oak barrels (45% new) and spent an additional six months in the bottle before release.
The nose of this Russian River Valley Pinot Noir is filled with bright cherry, raspberry and lifted floral aromas. The wine has appealing soft tannins with ripe plum flavors and hints of smoke and game. The palate is round with a long spice finish.
August 29-31, 2007 Total Acidity:
0.51 g/100 ml pH:
14.4% by volume Bottled:
February 2009 Release:
August 2009 Case Production: