Follow The Prince
twitter icon rss icon

Road 31 Wine Co.

Owner(s) Kent Fortner
Web site www.road31.com
 
Link to this site

Formerly named Green Truck Cellars, Road 31 Wine Co. is a one-man show with owner, grower, winemaker Kent Fortner producing about 800 cases of a single Pinot Noir each vintage. The name pays homage to Ken’s 1966 green Ford pickup truck which he still drives around Napa and Sonoma counties delivering wine. He produces his wine in leased cave space in the Stag’s Leap District of the Napa Valley just east of Silverado Road. His 2005 Napa Valley Pinot Noir was sourced from three vineyards in the southern-most reaches of the Napa Valley: Nord Vineyard, Poseidon Vineyard, and Stanly Ranch Vineyard. In 2006, he added a fourth vineyard: Suscol Ridge Vineyard. In 2007, Poseidon Vineyard was omitted.

Most of his wine is sold through a mailing list of “truckers” who get first crack at the wine. Consistently fine each vintage.

Reviewed Wines

2007 Road 31 Wine Co. Napa Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., pH 3.62, 800 cases, $39, released June 1, 2009. Low yields, great color, brown stems. Low juice to skin ratio. The wine sat on its gross lees without racking for a year in barrel. · Opens beautifully in the glass over time revealing a complex aromatic profile of cherries, berries, spice, brioche, and forest floor. Vivid and full-bodied flavors of black cherry and black berry jam caress the palate with an attractive underlying earthiness and savoriness. Soft and smooth in the mouth leading the wine to literally slip off the back of the palate. A juicy and seamless wine that is nicely crafted and well priced. Way too good for the dog. Reviewed September 5, 2009 ARTICLE »

2006 Road 31 Wine Co Napa Valley Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 950 cases, $39. · Shy fruit on the nose with Hungarian oak and herbal scents. Soft and demure red fruits with a slight green edge. The velvety texture is quite appealing and the wine is nicely balanced. This wine has everything in place but is just not ready for prime time. I suspect the fruit will emerge with resolution of the vegan aspect in another six months. The high quality of older vintages tasted recently would indicate that patience is required. Reviewed May 26, 2008 ARTICLE »

2006 Road 31 Wine Co. Napa Valley Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 950 cases, $39. · Very charming aromas of ripe berries and cherries with a hint of cola. Earth-kissed black cherry and black raspberry flavors. A soil-infused, medium-weighted wine of great interest showing supple tannins, admirable finesse, and a dry finish. A solid wine, but not quite as good as the 2007 vintage. Reviewed September 5, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Green Truck Cellars Napa Valley Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., 600 cases, $38 (sold out on website). Aged in 80% new French and 20% new Hungarian oak in caves for one year. · A nice cherry core with toasty oak, spice and earthiness in both the nose and on the palate. The finish is tangy with deft oak highlights. It is beautifully balanced. Reviewed April 30, 2007 ARTICLE »

2004 Green Truck Cellars Napa Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 650 cases, $36. Three vineyards (Nord, Suscol Ridge, Stanly Ranch) and four clones. · Terrific nose of ripe berry jam and Asian spices. Lovely berry fruit in the mouth which is clean, lush and spicy. Everything is working beautifully in harmony, with a deft touch of oak and refreshing acidity on the finish. Impeccably balanced and outstanding in every way. Reviewed May 26, 2008 ARTICLE »

2004 Green Truck Cellars Napa Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., $37. · This is a crisp and bright Pinot Noir powered by lively acidity. A little coffee and toast in the nose and a little spice on the finish. A very “juicy” wine that is looking for food. No complaints from me here. Reviewed April 30, 2007 ARTICLE »

2003 Green Truck Cellars Napa Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 500 cases, $35. · Deep, dark crimson robe. Complex aromas of black cherry, wet oak, spearmint, herbs and minerals. Dusty dark red fruit with subtle oak, iodine, and mushroom overtones. Silky in texture with brisk acidity and mild dirty tannins. Reviewed May 26, 2008 ARTICLE »