Vermentino is a light-skinned wine grape variety which is native (more or less,) to the Piedmont region of Italy, bordering France and Switzerland. In France, it is known as Rolle. Whether Rolle and Vermentino are the same grape (based on DNA) is still debated.
What we know is that the grape seems to thrive in Lodi’s Mediterranean climate. The leaves are dark green and pentagonal. The grapes are amber-yellow and hang in pyramidal bunches. In our winemaker’s opinion the vines should be grown with an open canopy so the fruit can benefit from mottled, reflected light.
This vintage of Vermentino was grown seven miles due east of m2 winery. Managed by Craig Ledbetter of Vino Farms, our fruit came from a small section of a large vineyard which Craig set aside for us. The vines were grown to maximize quality over quantity.
What does that mean? ... an open canopy with precise as-needed irrigation, hand-pruning, a reduced bunch count on each vine, plus hand-harvesting and extensive sorting of grapes in the vineyard.
At harvest we sorted the fruit again at the winery, destemmed the clusters then pressed the whole berries. The juice was fermented at a low temperature in stainless-steel tanks and prevented from completing malolactic fermentation to emphasize minerality and the bright citrus character of the wine.
This is a zesty wine with aromatic hints of green apples, flowers and citrus blossoms. The body is light, crisp, intensely fruit and very refreshing. We do not pretend to be experts on food and wine parings, but this wine causes us to remember extra small fresh raw oysters from Hog Island Oyster Company, and our home-made Vichyssoise, with grilled vegetables, olive oil and Mediterranean spices.
CERTIFIED LODI RULES
TA: 5 g/L
GROWER: CRAIG LEDBETTER
VINEYARD: VINO VERMENTINO
APPELLATION: MOKELUMNE RIVER – LODI
WINEMAKER: LAYNE MONTGOMERY
HARVEST DATE: SEPTEMBER 27, 2019
LENGTH OF FERMENTATION: 21 DAYS @ 40F. YEAST: QA23 MALO-LACTIC
BOTTLING DATE: FEBRUARY 25, 2020
QTY: 350 CASES PRODUCED
m2 has crafted Viognier from this same vineyard for 12 years as of this vintage and our winemaker says this is the best white wine he will ever make. Like all previous years, this one was grown in Perry Creek Vineyard in the Fair Play appellation of El Dorado County.
“Viognier” is a difficult word to pronounce, and probably why a lot of people are unfamiliar with this wine. Viognier is a major white wine grape in the Rhone region of France and, unfortunately, is still relatively rare in California.
The vineyard is 2.73 acres in size and overlooks the north fork of the Cosumnes River at an altitude of 1,800 feet. 2019 was a good year for this spot and the vineyard produced nine tons of fruit, a record in our experience, but what is considered normal production for this ground. Why so much fruit this year? No damage from frost, which usually claims a third to half of the crop each year.
This wine is full-bodied and lush. Rich aromas of stone fruits like apricot and peaches plus exotic tropical fruit nuances leads to a long, pleasant finish, and it also happens to be delicious! The wine was fermented in stainless steel at a low temperature to maximize the fruity aromas and flavors. No oak and no barrels were used.
TA: 7.4 g/L
RS: 0.1 g/L
GROWER: CAROL LAUBACH
VINEYARD: THE ORIGINAL PERRY CREEK ESTATE
APPELLATION: FAIR PLAY – EL DORADO COUNTY
HARVEST DATE: SEPTEMBER 11, 2019
LENGTH OF FERMENTATION: 31 DAYS @ 40 - 60F. YEAST: X15
MALO-LACTIC FERMENTATION: NONE
QTY: 224 CASES PRODUCED
In the glass aromas of strawberry and watermelon abound, accentuated with hints of citrus zest. We also notice flavors of pomegranate and cranberries, and a refreshing crispness.
Drink chilled with friends at a picnic, or on your porch while watching your neighbor mow his yard.
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