Clone 777 showcases a richer, bolder style of the Pinot Noir grape. It opens with heady aromas of rose petal, plum, leather and baking spice. Abundant up-front fruit floods the palate with jammy flavors of black cherry, black raspberry and strawberry with hints of vanilla. Juicy acidity and a medium-weight palate bring balance to a long, vibrant finish.
The 35-acre Brick Barn estate vineyard lies just north of the Santa Ynez River in a largely unexplored winegrowing corridor near the city of Buellton in the western Santa Ynez Valley. Here, persistent sun exposure ensures depth of flavor, while the Pacific Ocean—just 10 miles away—delivers daily cooling that maintains fruit acidity and structure. Our Cabernet Franc is grown in a 2.6-acre block situated along an upper highland at an elevation of 550 feet. Here, rocky loam and limestone soils impart qualities of intensity and finesse. This block is planted entirely with Clone 332, which is prized for its sturdy tannins, beautiful spiciness and Bordeaux-style profile. Perhaps more than any other grape variety, Cabernet Franc exemplifies what is special about the terroir of the Brick Barn estate vineyard.
The fruit from Block 11 was night harvested to ensure complete fruit integrity. After harvesting, the majority of the grapes were destemmed and cold soaked for a gentle extraction of color and flavor. The must was fermented in open-top bins with manual punchdowns three times daily—a small-lot winemaking regimen designed to maximize fruit quality and expression. The wine was then aged for 22 months in French oak barrels featuring 25 percent new oak, bringing added texture and dimension to the palate. Winemaker Adrian Bolshoi selected a total of nine barrels to create this limited-edition clonal selection.
Food Pairing Notes
The abundantly flavorful character of the 2018 Pinot Noir Clone 777 makes a nice match for grilled salmon, duck breast, herb-roasted pork tenderloin and pan-seared lamb chops.