Santa Ynez Valley,
We are lucky to be able to source the grapes from the Westerly Vineyard for this wine, as its poor rocky soils are the perfect antidote to this varietal’s natural vigorous and productive tendencies. Adding to this site’s great potential, we take the farming to an extreme by pruning the vines to the cordon method, rather than the more productive cane pruning technique, and leaving only a few single bud spurs per vine. In late spring we thin out the shoots that are not on our chosen spurs and end up with an open vine with even shoots and nicely sun-exposed clusters. This detailed attention to the vine gives us a ridiculously small crop of grapes, but every year it is of stellar quality.
In 2003, the flowering did not go well, so we harvested only half the usual small crop. The wine fermented to dryness right away (which was not the case in 2002), and it is zippy with pungent varietal herbal-ness and acidity. There is a marvelous stony quality to the finish, the direct result of the poor rocky soil and very low yields. I seek to showcase the careful work done in the vineyard, so avoided the use of new oak barrels in the aging of this wine….This is the pure unadulterated expression of sauvignon blanc from a special spot.
Robert Parkers Wine Advocate
“The 2003 Sauvignon Blanc, from the promising Westerly Vineyard, may be the finest Adam Tolmach has yet fashioned. It was barrel fermented in neutral wood, and had its malolactic blocked. The bouquet reveals luscious scents of figs, white peaches, citrus, and honeyed melons in a rich, concentrated, medium-bodied style with good underlying acidity.” – RP 91 Points