Chateau St. Jean’s Reserve wines are crafted by selecting the vineyard lots from throughout Sonoma County that offer the most generous fruit expression and the ability to age. This 2007 Reserve bottling is a blend of Pinot Noir from Benoist Ranch (65%) and Durell Vineyard (35%) in the cool Carneros appellation, at the southern end of Sonoma Valley. The grapes from these vineyards provide structure and backbone to this Reserve, along with concentrated fruit flavors.
Hand-picking and gentle fruit handling are key to great Pinot Noir production. Cap management and cold soaking are also key parts of the equation. Cold soaking before fermentation allows for the extraction of more color and flavor from this relatively thin-skinned grape. Open-top fermenters are used to allow gentle cap management by manually pushing the skins back down into the fermenting juice. This regime results in the best extraction of color, flavor and tannins from the skin. Each lot is assessed and individual barrels are tasted, those barrels that show the greatest intensity are kept aside for the Reserve bottling. After 19 months of barrel aging, the final selection is made and the blend is assembled. Bottled unfined, we gave this wine an additional seven months of bottle age before its release.
Inviting crushed berries aromas begin the nose of this Reserve Pinot Noir and lead to further notes of fresh violets and baking spices. On the palate, the wine offers a rich core of plum and red berry flavors. The tannins are round and fine-grained and mingle with the vibrant fruit to create an elegant structure.
0.53 g/100 ml pH:
14.6% by volume Bottled:
April 2009 Release:
November 2009 Case Production: