Single Vineyard Club

January 2018


January 11, 2018 Dear Single Vineyard Enthusiast, The new year always bring with it a sense of expectation. We have started pruning away last year’s growth to prepare for the new season. Cover crops have been planted, and it won’t be long before we see the blooming mustard between the dormant vines. I don’t know how the weather will end up defining 2018, but I would not have become a winemaker unless I were an optimist. While we wait to see how the 2018 growing season unfolds, we hope that you will enjoy the special selection of wines and vintages coming your way. Each bottle reflects the distinctive personality of the vineyard in which the wine was grown, as well as the nuances of the vintage. These unique traits speak to the very nature of the season that created them, as well as to how we responded to what nature gave us. These unpredictable events are part of what keeps winemaking so challenging and fun. They certainly keep all of us here on our toes! Sincerely,

Dirk Hampson
Director of Winemaking


January 11, 2018 Dear Single Vineyard Enthusiast, The new year always bring with it a sense of expectation. We have started pruning away last year’s growth to prepare for the new season. Cover crops have been planted, and it won’t be long before we see the blooming mustard between the dormant vines. I don’t know how the weather will end up defining 2018, but I would not have become a winemaker unless I were an optimist. While we wait to see how the 2018 growing season unfolds, we hope that you will enjoy the special selection of wines and vintages coming your way. Each bottle reflects the distinctive personality of the vineyard in which the wine was grown, as well as the nuances of the vintage. These unique traits speak to the very nature of the season that created them, as well as to how we responded to what nature gave us. These unpredictable events are part of what keeps winemaking so challenging and fun. They certainly keep all of us here on our toes! Sincerely,

Dirk Hampson
Director of Winemaking


2014 Nickel & Nickel
Beatty Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon

Howell Mountain, Napa Valley

Vineyard Description

Located atop Howell Mountain, Beatty Ranch typically gets to enjoy the warmth of the sun when summer fog lines the valley floor. While the fruit ripens easily, we must wait for mature tannins to emerge. The red, rocky soils are ideal for producing moderate-sized vines, and this vineyard is comprised of four different clones that each provide a unique flavor profile to the overall wine.

Sensory Evaluation

The 2014 Beatty Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon offers enchanting aromas of plum, cassis, olive and char. Red and black fruit flavors mingle beautifully with green olive, basil and pepper. A vibrant acidity marries with plush, coating tannins that expand through the midpalate to a finely contoured finish. Enticing in its youth, the Howell Mountain structure allows you to cellar this wine for years to come.


Appellation

Howell Mountain, Napa Valley

Varietal

100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Aging

17 Months in French oak barrels

  • 58% new
  • 42% once-used

Harvest Dates

October 8 – 14, 2014

Winemaker

Darice Spinelli

Director of Winemaking

Dirk Hampson


2014 Nickel & Nickel
Dragonfly Vineyard® Cabernet Sauvignon

St. Helena, Napa Valley

Vineyard Description

The diminutive, four-acre Dragonfly Vineyard is located in St. Helena at the base of Spring Mountain. Old timers know this magical place as a “banana belt” microclimate, as its ideal summer temperatures allow the vines to develop their notable ripe and jammy fruit. The vines benefit from the site’s deep, gravelly loam soils and gentle southern exposure, and the vineyard is one of the first to be harvested each year.

Sensory Evaluation

Vibrant and juicy, the 2014 Dragonfly Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon has aromas of rose petal and raspberry. Ripe strawberry, raspberry and floral notes are predominant upon the first sip and yield to layers of baking spice, vanilla and toasted oak. This wine is perfectly balanced with a texture that is elegant, yet full. Soft, supple tannins build on the middle palate and carry this youthful fruit into a long, polished finish.


Appellation

St. Helena, Napa Valley

Varietal

100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Aging

17 months in French oak barrels

  • 59% new
  • 41% once-used

Harvest Dates

September 20, 2014

Winemaker

Darice Spinelli

Director of Winemaking

Dirk Hampson


2015 Nickel & Nickel
Harris Vineyard Merlot

Oakville, Napa Valley

Vineyard Description

The 50-acre Harris Vineyard is located in western Oakville, just east of Branding Iron Vineyard. Nickel & Nickel’s five acres are comprised of two blocks that offer a southern exposure and soil of gravelly clay loam. Thinning passes allow each cluster to hang freely, optimizing the trellis system, and taking advantage of the warm climate to reach full maturity.

Sensory Evaluation

The 2015 Harris Merlot is the juiciest of our Nickel & Nickel Single-Vineyard Merlots. A good swirl of the glass offers aromas of ripe plum, cinnamon and toasted oak. This aromatic profile continues on the palate with accompanying flavors of dried herb and baking spices. Warm oak complements the fruit, and the wine’s rounded tannins makes it easily approachable upon release.


Appellation

Oakville, Napa Valley

Varietal

100% Merlot

Aging

16 Months in French oak barrels

  • 48% new
  • 52% once–used

Harvest Dates

September 8 – 22, 2015

Winemaker

Darice Spinelli

Director of Winemaking

Dirk Hampson


2016 Nickel & Nickel
Stiling Vineyard Chardonnay

Russian River Valley, Sonoma

Vineyard Description

Stiling Vineyard, located in the Green Valley Appellation of the Russian River Valley, was planted by the Stiling family in 1988. The vineyard is composed of the infamous Goldridge sandy loam soils which produce vines of moderate vigor. We source our fruit from two different blocks and two different clones – the See clone and the Rued clone. These clones each offer a unique flavor to the Stiling wine. The coastal influence produces daytime temperatures that allow the grapes to slowly develop full ripeness while retaining perfect balance. Nickel & Nickel produces Chardonnay from 10.5-acres within the 35-acre vineyard.

Sensory Evaluation

The 2016 Stiling Chardonnay opens with intoxicating floral aromas of muscat and honeysuckle. Layers of Meyer lemon, honeysuckle and citrus flavors glide across the palate. Supported by subtle oak and a natural acidity that adds vibrance and length, this wine is both refreshing and expansive, with elegant notes of muscat lingering on the finish.


Appellation

Russian River Valley, Sonoma

Varietal

100% Chardonnay

Aging

10 Months in French oak barrels

  • 50% new
  • 50% once–used

Harvest Dates

September 12 – October 1, 2016

Winemaker

Darice Spinelli

Director of Winemaking

Dirk Hampson

Additional Notes


2016 Nickel & Nickel
Truchard Chardonnay

Carneros, Napa Valley

Vineyard Description

Truchard Vineyard lies in the heart of Carneros, prized for its rolling hills, sun exposure and cool, breezy conditions that allow long, even ripening. Nickel & Nickel makes wine from fourteen select acres of this 270-acre vineyard, composed of volcanic ash and rock with a southwestern exposure. The growing season tends to be long in this cooler area, allowing for fully mature fruit at harvest.

Sensory Evaluation

Bright floral aromas of jasmine and orange blossom are prevalent in this 2016 Truchard Chardonnay. Peach, pear and tropical fruits fill the palate, accompanied by an interesting minerality and nice acidity. This vineyard naturally produces a wine with a broad mouthfeel and great presence, eliminating the need for malolactic fermentation. Creamy, toasty oak highlights the flavors, adding to the texture that is the signature of this vineyard.


Appellation

Carneros, Napa Valley

Varietal

100% Chardonnay

Aging

10 months in French oak barrels

  • 47% new
  • 53% once–used

Harvest Dates

September 15 – 26, 2016

Winemaker

Darice Spinelli

Director of Winemaking

Dirk Hampson


2014 Nickel & Nickel
Tench Vineyard® Cabernet Sauvignon

Oakville, Napa Valley

Vineyard Description

The 43-acre Tench Vineyard is situated on the eastern edge of Oakville along the Silverado Trail. The area’s red, rocky soils of clay and volcanic rock have produced many famous Napa Valley Cabernets. Nickel & Nickel produces Cabernet from just nine acres of this late-ripening vineyard with northwest exposure. The grapes rapidly develop color and flavor as temperatures rise and harvest approaches.

Sensory Evaluation

The 2014 Tench Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon exudes dark berry flavors with a hint of fresh blueberry, which defines this special site. A mouthwatering entry coats the palate, while the flavor and texture are complemented by restrained oak. Ultimately, the tannins dissolve, leaving an impression of resolution and completeness.


Appellation

Oakville, Napa Valley

Varietal

100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Aging

16 months in French oak barrels

  • 55% new
  • 45% once–used

Harvest Dates

September 29 – October 2, 2014

Winemaker

Darice Spinelli

Director of Winemaking

Dirk Hampson


2014 Nickel & Nickel
C.C. RANCH Cabernet Sauvignon

Rutherford, Napa Valley

Vineyard Description

C.C. Ranch is planted in Rutherford, along the slope of a knoll west of the Silverado Trail. The vineyard grows classic Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon on well-drained, gravelly loam soil and receives a variety of exposures, depending on the block and location. The vines are well balanced and the canopy is opened up to give good light exposure. Nickel & Nickel produces wine from 15 select acres of this 115-acre vineyard.

Sensory Evaluation

The 2014 C.C. Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon is bursting with opulent flavors of red raspberry and ripe cherry, baking spice and dust. Hints of floral and pencil lead add dimension to the wine’s profile while refined tannins liven the palate. Vibrant acidity supports the fruit, making it enjoyable while young. Careful aging will allow hidden flavors to evolve over time.


Appellation

Rutherford, Napa Valley

Varietal

100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Aging

16 months in French oak barrels

  • 57% new
  • 43% once–used

Harvest Dates

September 12 – 27, 2014

Winemaker

Darice Spinelli

Director of Winemaking

Dirk Hampson