The Essentials Trio
Our variety set showcases the full range of grapes we grow at Fort Ross Vineyard: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinotage.
95 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
As with all of these releases, the 2017 Chardonnay Mother Of Pearl comes all from the estate vineyard in the Fort Ross-Seaview AVA of the Sonoma Coast. Aged 15 months in 25% new French oak, it offers a Meursault-like bouquet of caramelized stone fruits, brioche, toasted almonds, and a touch of flinty minerality. Rich, medium to full-bodied, and concentrated on the palate, it's a stunning Chardonnay from winemaker Jeff Pisoni that does everything right.
93 Points - Wine Advocate
The 2017 Chardonnay Estate Mother of Pearl has pretty scents of white peaches and quince with layers of almond, spring honey and flowers. Medium to full-bodied, the palate offers savory fruits with tangy freshness and a long, nuanced finish.
We only make Bicentennial Pinot Noir in the best years. The 2017 growing season welcomed generous rainfall for the first several months of the year. The summer enjoyed mild to average, 80-85° temperatures, allowing the grapes to develop ideal complexity and flavors with optimal development. During the first week of September, all of California experienced a heat spike; with this the first few blocks were harvested. All of our Pinot Noir was harvested between August 31–September 19, well ahead of the heartbreaking Sonoma fires. The vintage brought in lower yields, producing wines with great depth and concentration, while the hydrated soils delivered vibrant aromatics and acidity.
90 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
The 2014 Pinotage, Fort Ross Vineyard is terrific, and I suspect it is the finest Pinotage I've ever tasted from outside South Africa. Outstanding notes of scorched earth, black cherries, graphite, and some classic herbal characteristics all give way to a medium-bodied red that has a layered texture, terrific balance and a great finish. Hats off to winemaker Jeff Pisoni for making a truly outstanding Pinotage.