August 27, 2019
The Prince Departs

2013 Bailiwick Michaud Vineyard Monterey County Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.66, TA 0.61, 49 cases, $44. This vineyard sits at 1600 feet elevation at the front door of Pinnacles National Monument. Soils contain significant amounts of decomposed granite and limestone. Michael Michaud, the former winemaker at Chalone in its hay day, has farmed this vineyard since the early 1990s. Clones 115, 667, 777 and Swan. The berries and clusters were particularly small and the grapes more thick-skinned in 2013 due to sparse rainfall, with very low yields. 100% de-stemmed, followed by a 4-day cold soak after which fermentation was initiated with natural yeasts. The fermentation was augmented with an additional yeast strain. The wine was macerated on the skins for several weeks after fermentation. Aged 17 months in 100% French oak barrels, 50% new. · Moderate cherry red color in the glass. Pleasing aromas of black cherry, earthy flora and mixed berry jam lead to mid weight flavors of blackberry and black raspberry with a welcome notes of spice, dark chocolate, Kahlua and oak creeping in. Firm tannins, yet very polished, with the fruit playing a starring role on the vigorous finish. This vineyard can produce wines with daunting tannins, but they were corralled in this special wine. Score: 90. Reviewed November 5, 2015

Winery: Bailiwick Wines
From article: Recently Tasted California Pinot Noir: The Bar Keeps Moving Higher