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Harvest Dates: 3rd to the 14th of October, 2014
Brix at harvest: 21.7 – 22.8
Blend and grape source: 100% organically certified estate Pinot Noir from Locust Lane, Felseck and Rosomel Vineyards Alcohol: 12.7% pH: 3.60
Residual Sugar: 0.19g/l T.A. 6.03 g/L
Bottling Date: March 17th, 2016
Vine age: Planted 1990 to 2008
Oak regime: 100% French Oak: 23% New, 30% 2nd fill and the rest neutral for 12 months; stainless steel for 6 months prior to bottling
Time in barrel: 12 months
The fruit for our Estate Pinot Noir comes from select parcels in all three our estate vineyards.
At fruit set, we exposed bunches to sunlight, with leaf removal on the East side of the canopy to maximize ripening, but leaving the West side covered to protect against sunburn. Green harvest was performed at the first sign of véraison. Yields in 2014 were extremely low due to winter injury to the primary buds and on average the Estate Pinot Noir produced only 12hL per hectare (0.7 tons/acre).
The grapes were handpicked, sorted and cold‐soaked in small lots for 5 days. Fermentation started naturally with indigenous yeasts and the caps were gently hand‐plunged between three and four times daily during fermentation. At the end of fermentation, the free run wine was drained by gravity directly into barrels and the skins were gently pressed in a traditional basket press. Natural malolactic fermentation was complete in the Spring of 2015.
Our 2014 Estate Pinot Noir shows fresh red fruit and field berry aromas on the nose, while the palate is rich with defined ripe black cherry. Fruit aromas are nicely balanced with earthy, savoury notes and characteristic Bench minerality. Tannins are smooth and the finish long and lingering. Serve slightly chilled at 14-15 ̊C.
THE GROWING SEASON
Wines from the 2014 vintage shows the complexity of our unique Beamsville Bench. The winter of 2014 was severely
cold and snowy. With the ground in deep freeze, the cold temperatures prevailed well into spring and temperatures only returned to normal in the month of May.
As a result of the cold winter, we experienced cold damage in our more sensitive varieties and locations and an across the board reduction in yield. Fortunately, most of our focus at HB are on less sensitive varieties. This and the general good health and good care of our vines will ensure that yields bounce back in the next couple of years.
June and July stayed cool with ample moisture, giving vines a chance to mature at a steady rate. As a result of the late start to the growing season, harvesting started 14 days later than normal. At HB we started picking on the 1st of October and finished on the 30th.
As we saw in 2009, August and September days were warm and sunny and nights cool with good diurnal temperature swings, giving grapes the chance to mature. Good weather prevailed into October when we started picking. Fruit quality was exceptional with minimal disease pressure and good phenolic and sugar ripeness. Our vineyard team did an excellent job ensuring the health of our vines, keeping crop levels down, in order to ripen the 2014 crop and ensure a productive vineyard in subsequent years. Meticulous shoot positioning and leaf removal to open up canopies and maximize sunlight exposure ensured perfect ripening.
Sound picking decisions and minimal, timely intervention in the cellar has resulted in elegant, balanced wines that are true to the vintage.