From our mountain vineyard that overlooks the Sonoma Coast in the Fort Ross-Seaview American Viticultural Area, Fort Ross Vineyard & Winery produces limited quantities of single vineyard, Estate grown, cool-climate Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinotage. With spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean less than one mile away, the vineyard is divided into 32 separate blocks, one-half to two acres in size, that range in elevation from 1700 down to 1200 feet above sea level. Owners, Lester and Linda Schwartz with their small crew began preparing the 52 acre vineyard in 1994. It took them 4 years of preparation before they could begin planting. The year 2000 marked the first vintage from the Fort Ross Vineyard.
93 Points - Wine & Spirits
This grows at the westernmost blocks of Lester and Linda Schwartz's vineyard, on coastal ridges less than a mile from the Pacific. Powered by coastal energy, this is musky and intense. Its skin tannins bring to mind cranberries and blackberries, with the high-toned lift of roses. It's enriched by the tannins of new oak, big in scale and lasting in flavor, a wine that would stand its ground in the wind on the beach as you grill wild salmon.
Stagecoach Road Pinot Noir grapes are grown in the vineyard blocks closest to the ocean with some of the darkest soils on the estate and is always our boldest Pinot Noir. This deep ruby-colored cuvée exudes
aromas of black raspberry, cassis and plum with warm earth and savory notes. The palate is succulent with layers of black currant, boysenberry, and cherry with beet root, cocoa and spice. The integrated, well-structured tannins carry throughout the long, polished finish that is enlivened with acidity. This wine is drinking beautifully now and will cellar for years to come.
The grapes for this Pinot Noir were handpicked during the cool hours of the night in 2 gallon trays. After hand sorting, the fruit was cold soaked for several days and fermented in a combination of 5 and 10 ton tanks. The caps were punched down 1 or 2 times per day, depending on the stage of the fermentation. The wines were then barreled in a combination of 50% new and 50% neutral French oak. Throughout the 10 months of barrel aging, the clones and different vineyard blocks were kept separate to maintain their distinct flavor profiles and structural components as blending elements. These grapes are sourced from specific blocks where the old stagecoach road used to run though our vineyard and where Black Bart the famous “Gentleman Bandit” Highwayman robbed the Wells Fargo Stagecoach in 1877.
266 cases produced