Helfer Vineyard, 2008

$ 65.00

The Helfer Vineyard is located in the Vine Hill area of the Russian River Valley. The vineyard’s densely planted vines require hand cultivation and yield more concentrated fruit than can be achieved by traditional California vine spacing. We bottle this Chardonnay without fining or filtration to preserve its finer qualities.

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Winemaker's Notes

This is our eleventh vintage of working with this vineyard in the Russian River Valley. The yields were a victim of repeated springtime frost. In fact, there was less than one barrel of juice pressed: only 47 gallons! So, I contacted a local cooper who had resized a barrel for me in the past. He shrunk a 60 gallon barrel to hold 45 gallons. So I began fermentation in couple of new barrels and moved the fermenting juice to the shrunken one-year-old barrel as the fermentation calmed down.

This wine has the concentration and focus of the 1999 vintage – one of my favorites as it has aged. I love how the minerality plays off the hint of lime-zest and star fruit typical of this vineyard. There is less new oak influence than usual which I like and makes me want to rethink the normal routine. I think it is very special, and unfortunately, very rare.






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  1. Judi Scherrer

    Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine CellarMay 2011

    Bright gold. Poached pear, tangerine, iodine and floral honey on the exotically perfumed nose. Rich and expansive, with lush but focused pit and orchard fruit flavors complicated by notes of anise and succulent herbs. This shows real power but there’s an intriguing litheness too. Finishes smooth and sappy, with excellent persistence and lingering smokiness. 92 points. Josh Raynolds

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