2019 Williams Selyem Rochioli Riverblock Pinot NoirUdsolgt
Counterpoint to the hillside of the Allen Vineyard, the Rochioli Riverblock sits just above the bank of the Russian River. The deeper soils allow the vines to slowly mature and develop dark, baritone-like aromas and flavors. A basket full of berries dominate the nose along with fennel fronds and citrus. On the palate, the wine is harmonious and dense with dark fruit flavors and earthy undertones. Older vines from 1989 make up the bulk of the wine which translates into an unsurpassed polish to the tannins.
The Rochioli Riverblock Vineyard is located six miles southwest of the town of Healdsburg, banking the Russian River. Fog-cooled evenings and moderately warm daytime temperatures make the Russian River Valley region ideal for growing Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes.
The 2019 growing season started with ample rainfall in the winter months and finished well above average. Wet soil and cool temperatures conspired to delay bud break nearly two weeks later than historical average. Moderate to slightly above average temperatures ensued and the vegetative cycle caught up. Flowering started under ideal conditions but a late May rain event delayed flowering for a week. This had some impact and created some shatter and smaller clusters. These smaller clusters are desirable because they are looser and the smaller the berry, the higher the tendency to yield concentrated and flavorful wines. The remainder of the growing season was largely uneventful. August was largely fog-free, so the nights were warmer and the days sunnier which tended to move photosynthesis and maturation along more quickly. The harvest schedule was mostly routine and rather leisurely with grapes arriving to the winery in pristine condition. The 2019 wines are impressive with excellent color, depth, and precision of site. The polish of the tannins and softer acid profiles will offer early appeal but can certainly hold on for years.
Barrel Description: 69% new, 31% 1 yr. Barrel Aged: 16 months