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This boutique winery is focused on limited production Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from the Sta. Rita Hills and Santa Maria Valley. Owner and winemaker Joanne Duray developed a curiosity for wine as a child while watching her Italian immigrant grandfather tend to his wines in his Michigan basement. In 2011, after much imbibing and study, she transitioned from award-winning hobby winemaker to commercial winemaker.
Her mentors have included Peter Hunken of Hocus Pocus and Wes Hagen of Clos Pepe Vineyards. She studied chemistry at UC Davis and earned a Vintage Certificate from UCLA.
The wines are sold through a mailing list and the winery's website store.
2012 small + tall Clos Pepe Vineyard “Liquid Joy” Sta. Rita Hills Chardonnay
$30. Dijon 76 and Wente clones. Pressed to neutral French oak barrels and stainless steel barrels and cool fermented with native yeast. Aged 16 months on the lees. Oak and stainless steel lots blended before bottling. Whole cluster pressed to barrel, native and proprietary yeast fermentation (50/50), 100% malolactic fermentation, aged sur lie for 17 months in French oak barrels. Bottled unfined and unfiltered. 13.5% alc., $. · Light golden yellow color in the glass with a slight haze. The aromatic profile was unusual and hard to describe but included aromas of lemongrass and nutty granola. Flavors of lemon cake, apple, marzipan and toast are framed by a vibrant acidity. An unpretentious, every day style. Score: 87. Reviewed November 22, 2015 ARTICLE »
2012 small + tall “Little Joy” Garey Vineyard Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir
13.5% alc., $48. Clone 777. 100% de-stemmed, 4 to 6-day cold soak, native fermentation, aged 16 months in French oak barrels (0% new). · Moderately light reddish purple color in the glass. Embracing aromas of cherries and berries with a compliment of oak. Relatively light in weight but quite flavorful, featuring red fruits brought to life with juicy acidity. Quite expressive, particularly on the lengthy finish. Plenty of Pinot singing in this wine. Score: 91. Reviewed November 22, 2015 ARTICLE »
2012 small + tall “Joyful” Clos Pepe Vineyard Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir
14.1% alc., $60. Clone 115. 100% de-stemmed, 4 to 6-day cold soak, native fermentation, aged 16 months in French oak barrels on the lees. · Moderate reddish purple hue in the glass. Aromas of cherry, strawberry and doughy oak are prominent initially, with the fruit becoming less expressive over time in the glass. Enviable entry and attack of strawberry, raspberry and cherry fruits accented with herbs and oak. The tannins are supported without being intrusive, and the dry finish continues the red berry and cherry theme. Satisfactory, even very good, but not special. Score: 89. Reviewed November 22, 2015 ARTICLE »