Donum Estate

Owner(s) Winside, Inc.
Web site www.thedonumestate.com
 
Link to this site
Donum Estate

The Donum Estate (Donum translates from the Latin to “gift” and refers to grapes as a gift of the land) is devoted solely to Carneros estate Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and a Russian River estate Pinot Noir. Winegrower and President, Anne Moller-Racke, arrived in 1981 to help run Buena Vista which had been acquired by the German company, Racke. Anne had trained with industry icons like Andre Tchelistcheff. She planted what was then Tula Vista Ranch in 1989-90, and was the Vineyard Manager for Buena Vista Carneros for many years. She played an instrumental role in obtaining appellation status for Carneros and the formation of the Carneros Quality Alliance.

With the sale of Buena Vista to Allied Domecq in 2001, Anne and Markus Moeller-Racke divorced, and Anne then split off 147 acres of the Buena Vista Estate, retaining Tula Vista Ranch but renaming it which became an ultra-premium producer of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Donum Estate also grew grapes for the rejuvenated Robert Stemmler label.

The true origins of a certain Pinot Noir selection in the Donum Estate Vineyard are unknown and the selection has become known as the Donum “clone.” It is presumably a Roederer selection. The Donum Vineyard also contains several other clonal selections including Calera, Hanzell, Swan, Calera, Chalone and Dijon 115, 667 and 777. Donum also farms the nearby Ferguson Block Vineyard, planted to Martini clone in 1974 by Thomas Ferguson.

Upon acquiring The Donum Estate, Anne began an intensive rehabilitation of the vineyards. All blocks were individually and carefully farmed, and each vine hand-worked to reach its greatest potential. Only special blocks were considered for designated bottling.

Special bottlings from the Donum Vineyard include West Slope, East Slope (Calera) and from Ferguson Block Vineyard labeled Thomas (Martini). These wines are in my opinion among the best Pinot Noirs produced today in California.

The consulting winemaker for The Donum Estate and Robert Stemmler beginning in 2005 was talented, young Kenneth Juhasz, who also crafts wine under his own label, Auteur. The first release of The Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir was 2001. Juhasz has given way in 2012 to his assistant winemaker of five years, Dan Fishman, who is now the consulting winemaker. The vineyard manager is Lauro Servin.

In late December, 2011, Racke sold The Donum Estate to Winside, Inc., a partnership of Danish investors for an undisclosed amount. The deal included a 147-acre Sonoma Carneros property with 45 acres of vineyards and several buildings, the Donum and Stemmler brands, and inventories. Donum's potential for more estate plantings and bottlings was a consideration in the investment. The acquisition keeps in place the team that developed The Donum Estate over the past decade including Anne Moller-Racke and consulting winemaker Kenneth Juhasz.

Donum will continue to make estate grown Pinot Noir from the 16-acre Nugent Vineyard in the Russian River Valley which Anne has farmed continuously since planting it to Dijon clones in 1997 (Pommard was added in 2009). The Nugent Vineyard was acquired in 2012. An exclusive lease was contracted for the 20-acre Angel Camp Vineyard in the Anderson Valley in 2012 as well. With the infusion of capital, a 40-acre parcel adjacent the Donum Estate was acquired and will be planted primarily to the Donum clone, and plantings at the existing Donum Estate property are being expanded to the Pommard clone which was previously absent at the Donum Estate. About 14 acres of the Donum Estate are being replanted to Pommard, Calera, Wädenswil and Dijon 667 Pinot Noir clones and Wente Chardonnay clone.

The winery is not open to the public, but tasting is available by appointment. The wines are sold through a mailing list and the website with limited retail distribution. Current production is about 3,000 cases, and the winery's second label, Robert Stemmler, accounts for about 6,000 cases. The wines are produced at Punchdown Cellars in Santa Rosa, but a new winery may be be built on the newly acquired property.

Reviewed Wines

2011 Donum Estate Grown Anderson Valley Pinot Noir

14.3% alc., pH 3.92, TA 0.54, 312 cases, $72. 9 clones and selections planted in volcanic, sandy soils on a 500-foot knoll in the “deep end” of the Anderson Valley (Angel Camp Vineyard). A blend of 115, 667 and 777, Wädenswil, and David Bruce and Swan selections. 1-week cold soak, two fermentations with Dijon clones in one and other selections in the second resulting in close to a 50/50 blend. Best barrel selection before bottling. Aged in 54% new French oak barrels. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. Inviting aromas of black cherry, black raspberry, blackberry, root beer and oak vanillin. Full-bodied and structured with deep, dark and dense blackberry and black raspberry flavors with a hint of cola. The flavors tiptoe to the edge of ripeness but fall short of going over the edge. Slightly impenetrable and needing more time in bottle. Score: 91. Reviewed May 15, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Donum Estate Grown Carneros Pinot Noir

14.3% alc., pH 3.76, TA 0.55, 479 cases, $72. 100% Donum Roederer clone from two blocks. Aged in 55% new Francois Frères French oak barrels. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. Enticing aromas of fresh cherry pie, exotic spices and toasty oak. Mid to full-bodied, delicious flavors of dark cherry and boysenberry with a hint of sandalwood in the background. Refined and polished with well-managed tannins, finishing with agreeable vigor. Score: 92. Reviewed May 15, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Donum Estate Grown Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.7% alc., pH 3.63, TA 0.59, 499 cases, $72. Equal parts 115 and 667. 5-day cold soak, aged 16 months in 80% new French oak barrels · Moderately dark reddish purple hue in the glass. A striking wine with bright aromas of Bing cherry, teal leaves, cola and spice. The luscious cherry core is mouth filling and lasts and lasts on the generous finish. Silky in texture, with modest tannins and complimentary oak in the background. Score: 91. Reviewed May 15, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Donum Estate Grown Reserve Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.7% alc., pH 3.65, TA 0.59, 343 cases, $90. A selection of 14 barrels of Dijon 667 clone. Long cold soak, aged 18 months in 71% new French oak. · Dark reddish purple color in the glass. Deep aromas of black cherry, sassafras and cedary oak. Very polished and lush on the palate, with a sappy core of Bing cherry fruit accented with sassafras, cola and brown spices. A nice touch of oak adds interest and the refined tannins bring softness. The most striking feature of this wine is the finish which is flamboyant and very persistent. Tasted the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle, the finish remained striking. Score: 93. Reviewed May 15, 2014 ARTICLE »

2010 Donum Estate Grown Gold Label Carneros Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., $72. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of dark red fruits, sweet oak, spice, mocha and pine. Very flavorful, featuring very ripe dark strawberry, raspberry and cherry fruits with a well-spiced finish. Oak is well integrated and the tannins are nicely balanced. The wine exhibits good focus and definition, showing more delicacy than the Black Label Estate bottling. Tasted over two days from a previously opened and re-corked bottle, the wine lost a bit of mid palate and finishing intensity. Good (+). Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Donum Estate Grown Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., $72. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Lovely and intense aromas of ripe Bing cherries with a hint of spice, brewed tea, hazelnut and mocha, becoming more effusive over time in the glass. Dark cherries are featured with a hint of Coca- Cola, stem and oak. Nicely crafted in a middleweight style, offering a juicy, lively drinking experience. Good. Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Donum Estate Grown East Slope Carneros Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., $90. Martini clone. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. The aromas draw you into the glass, with notes of purple grapes, black cherries, cassis and mushrooms on the grill. Impressive fruit concentration with lip-smacking black raspberry and black plum fruit flavor, with the signature Carneros earthiness in the background, still sporting firm tannins which will need time to soften. Tasted two days later from a previously opened and re-corked bottle, the wine was more giving and clearly displays the goods to age. Very good. Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Donum Estate Grown Reserve Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., $90. · Dark purple in the glass. A brooding wine at present, offering shy aromas of black cherries, cassis and black raspberries with subtle new oak scents that are evident from entry to finish. Full-bodied, displaying very intense, ripe blackberry and boysenberry fruit flavors with an undertone of cola, black tea and earth. Incredible power, with a firm tannic backbone, finishing with both length and impressive fruit presence. This wine definitely needs more time in bottle and may warrant a more glowing rating over time. Good (+). Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Donum Estate Grown West Slope Carneros Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., $90. Limited production in this vintage and available only to wine club members. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Vibrant aromas of black cherries, peppery spice, stem and flowered meadow. Delicious core of perfectly ripened black cherry and black raspberry fruit with an undertone of dark chocolate and anise. The fruit really sings, reaching a crescendo on the powerful finish. Tasted over two days from a previously opened and re-corked bottle, the wine is clearly built to age and will benefit from cellaring to bring the oak and tannins into optimum balance. The jewel of the Donum Estate. Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Donum Estate 10th Anniversary Black Label Estate Grown Carneros Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 100 cases, $120. A best barrel blend from Donum Ranch crus. Aged in 25% new French oak barrels. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. Enticing aromas of fresh black cherries, strawberries, spice and complimentary oak vanillin. A little richer and more structured than the 2010 Estate Gold Label bottling. The wine offers layers of flavor including very ripe black cherry, black currant, dark chocolate, grilled meat, and tantalizing oak. Much better the next day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle showing better integration of oak, aromas that jumped out of the glass, and a finish to die for. Exceptional. Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2009 Donum Estate Grown Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.61. TA 0.65, 400 cases, $65. Soon to be released. A blend of Calera, old Martini and Donum Roederer selections from several blocks on the Donum Ranch. Aged 16 months in 65% new French oak barrels. · Dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of cherries, dark rose petals, exotic woods and stem. Delicious core of black cherry, black raspberry and raisin flavors with an appealing earthy, soil-driven character. Veers to the ripe fruit side. Moderately rich, with wellbalanced firm tannins. Plush on the palate and welcoming now. Very good. Reviewed June 24, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Donum Estate Grown Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.50, TA 0.65, 400 cases, $65. Blend of Dijon clones 115 and 667. 100% de-stemmed, total maceration 3 weeks. Aged 16 months in 60% new Remond oak barrels. Best bottles selected from each lot and blended in the summer of 2009. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. The nose is rather mesmerizing, offering aromas of very ripe Bing cherries, brandy, brown sugar and spice. Luscious, but light on its feet, with a dense core of black cherry and raspberry fruit, filling the mouth and exploding on the finish. Very smoothly textured with pliant tannins and a refreshing cut of lively acidity on the finish. Very well crafted. Very good (+). Reviewed June 24, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Donum Estate Grown Reserve Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.46, TA0.67,80 cases, $85. An inaugural release from an 11-acre vineyard that was planned and planted by Anne Moeller-Racke in the mid 1990s. 100% Dijon clone 667. 100% de-stemmed, total maceration time 3 weeks. Aged 16 months in 67% new French oak barrels. Best barrels selected and blended in the summer of 2009. · Dark reddish-purple color in the glass. My God! An unbelievably spirited nose of vibrant black cherries. Moderately rich in weight but deeply packed with deep, dark cherry flavor. The fruit is perfectly ripe and accented with the Russian River trademarks of spice and cola. Seamless with tannins that match up to the opulent fruit. This wine has it all and the wine to show someone when searching for an example of a great Russian River Valley Pinot Noir Reviewed June 24, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Donum Estate Grown West Slope Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.60, TA 0.64, 250 cases, $85. From a west-sloping block in the 5.5-acre site at Donum Ranch. Roederer selection. A barrel selection from this single block as a stand-alone wine. 100% de-stemmed, 6-day cold soak, inoculated with RC212, four punch downs per day, extended maceration (total maceration time was three weeks. Aged 16 months in 70% new French oak barrels. Best barrels selected and blended in the summer of 2009. Aged in 70% new French oak (Francois Frerès, Billon and Ermitage). · Dark reddish-purple robe. Intriguing aromas of dark cherries and berries, compost, soil, hops and rose petals. Wow! Hits the mid palate with strikingly plush, spicy dark red and black fruits buffered with ideal oak integration and perfectly balanced tannins and acidity. Ridiculously long and memorable finish. Offers something different with each sip. Like Drew Barrymore - very successful at a young age (much more approachable than previous vintage). Even better the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. An amazing wine that is California Pinot at its best and flat out one of the finest Pinots (along with the Donum Thomas) I have reviewed so far this year. Wine Spectator trumpets “94,” I say, “98.” Did I say long finish? Reviewed June 24, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Donum Estate Grown Thomas Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.34, TA 0.75, 101 cases, $100. Named for Thomas Ferguson, the owner of Ferguson Block, a 1974 planting of Martini selection Pinot Noir. Honors Thomas Ferguson’s 100th birthday. Winegrower Anne Moller-Racke has worked with this vineyard for 28 years, and the Thomas block has always stood out. Every year in blind tastings, it is see as been the best from this vineyard, a true evidence of terroir. 100% de-stemmed, native primary fermentation. Aged 16 months in 1-year-old French Billon oak barrels. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Brooding aromas of black cherries ripe strawberries, berry reduction sauce and spice. Soft, plush and supple in the mouth, with flavors of perfectly ripe black raspberries, black cherries and black tea that really wake up the mouth. The wine offers pliant tannins and a good cut of acidity on a finish that is eyeopening. The silky texture is outrageous. More approachable than previous vintages. Impeccable balance. Even better the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Hard to choose between this wine and the West Slope. You will need a cold shower after drinking this one. Reviewed June 24, 2012 ARTICLE »

2008 Donum Estate Grown Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., $65. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. The nose really draws you into the glass. Enticing aromas of ripe berry preserves, black cherries, brewed tea, forest floor, and oak cask. Medium-weight flavors of black raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries with an appealing earthy and cola accent. The fruit has a bright and refreshing character, lingering on the crisp finish. This wine is definitely more elegant and lighter weighted than previous vintages but I find it equally appealing and interesting because of its strong portrayal of the vintage. Very good. Reviewed July 1, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 Donum Estate Grown Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., $65. · Moderately dark reddishpurple in the glass. Initially offers pleasing scents of Bing cherries, sassafras, spice and oak, losing some charm over time in the glass and showing a hint of alcoholic heat. Moderately rich core of tasty cherries with accents of cola, spice and smoke. Silky with restrained tannins and a bright ping of acidity on the finish. Ready to drink now. Good. Reviewed July 1, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 Donum Estate Grown West Slope Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.51, TA 0.69, 170 cases, $85. From a special 5.5- acre site at the Donum Ranch planted to the Roederer selection that as been the mainstay of the Donum Carneros Pinot Noir. In some vintages, it becomes more complex when blended with a small amount of old Martini selection but in 2007 and 2008 it is a stand-alone wine from the West Slope. 100% de-stemmed, 10% saignee immediately after crushing, 6-day cold soak, inoculated primary fermentation, three week extended maceration. Aged 16 months in 75% new French oak barrels including Francois Freres. · Moderate garnet in color in the glass. Lovely aromatic profile of fresh berry tart, wood spice, and redwood bark. Ambrosial flavors of dark red cherries and berries with a hint of sandalwood and Asian spice. Very classy, elegant juice, with amazing aromatic persistence on the lavish finish. Perfectly integrated tannins and bright acidity make for satisfying drinkability now. Still great two days later from a previously opened and re-corked bottle indicating this wine will age beautifully. Reviewed July 1, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 Donum Estate Estate Grown Thomas Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.34, TA 0.75, 101 cases, $100. This special release is named for Thomas Ferguson, the owner of Ferguson Block, a 1974 planting of Martini selection Pinot Noir. In 2008, Mr. Ferguson celebrated his 100th birthday. 100% de-stemmed, 4-day cold soak, native primary fermentation, 3 manipulations daily including punch downs and pump overs. A selection of best barrels. Aged 16 months in 100% 1-year-old Billon French oak barrels. · The lightest in color of the 2008 Donum wines reviewed here. This wine is currently rustic and rugged, but what potential. Aromas of black cherry, wood smoke, old leather and oak. Intense and mouth coating fruit that really grabs your attention upon entry. Dark berries and cherries are featured that are fresh, vivid, soil-infused, tarry and smoky. The bright acidity leads you to take another sip and the big finish has Grand Cru persistence. A unique expression of terroir and clonal selection that needs a few years to find its footing, but will last many years beyond this. Reviewed July 1, 2011 ARTICLE »

2007 Donum Estate Grown Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.69, 800 cases, $65. Primarily Donum Roederer selection blended with Dijon 667, a Martini selection, and a Calera selection. De-stemmed, coldsoaked. All free-run juice. Aged 11 months in 70% new French oak. Best barrel selection. Unfined and unfiltered. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Savory notes dominate the aromatic profile with scents of herbs, forest floor, tobacco and wine cellar accenting the black cherry fruit. Ambrosial blackberry and black raspberry core with underlying loamy earth notes. Smooth and creamy on the palate with silky but firm tannins. Very typical of Carneros terroir. Very good. Reviewed April 9, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Donum Estate Grown Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.69, 500 cases, $65 (sold out). Blend of Dijon 115 and 667 clones. All free-run juice. Aged 11 months in 75% new Remond French oak. Best barrel selection. Unfined and unfiltered. · Very dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Lovely aromas of Bing cherries, strawberry jam, baking spice, cardamon and clove. Great nose! Delicious and creamy core of cherries and berries nicely enhanced with spice and cola that linger on the generous finish. The glamorous fruit is caressed by supple tannins. I could drink this all night long. Reviewed April 9, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Donum Russian River Estate Grown Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.69, 500 cases, $65. 40% 667 and 60% 115. 95% de-stemmed. 5 to 10 day cold soak, native fermentation, 1 week extended maceration, aged on lees 11 months in 75% new French oak. No press wine incorporated into the blend. Unfined and unfiltered. (Label says 100% Carneros fruit from Donum Estate - obviously an error). · Dark reddish-purple color. Very lovely black cherry and blackberry aromas that are heady and penetrating. Full-bodied, almost syrupy, with endless dark Pinot fruit. Unusually dark for Russian River Valley stock. Still backward and linear without nuance but definitely has impressive stuffing. The best Donum Russian River bottling to date. Put this one in the cellar. Very good. Reviewed October 29, 2009 ARTICLE »

2007 Donum Estate Grown West Slope Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., pH 3.72, 150 cases, $70. Inaugural release of this wine. 100% Donum Roederer selection from 4-90 block. De-stemmed, cold-soaked, send to barrel on lees after extended maceration. Aged 16 months in 70% new French oak. Best barrel selection. Unfined and unfiltered. · Hold on to your seat when you pop the cork on this one. Terrific nose that is heavily nuanced with aromas of cherries, berries, spice, oak toast and garden bouquet, all coming and going in the glass over time. The earth-kissed dark stone and berry fruit really attacks the senses and holds on with a firm grip as it coats every nook and cranny in the mouth and lingers for what seems like several minutes. The creamy texture and soft tannins add to the wine’s sensuality. Descriptors don’t do this wine justice. In short, flat-out great. Reviewed April 9, 2010 ARTICLE »

2006 Donum Estate Carneros Estate Grown Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., 850 cases, $65. Unusually long growing season. The vineyard averages 115 days from bloom to harvest but in 2005 it was 130 days. 100% de-stemmed. Cold soaked 5 days. Aged on the lees 11 months in 75% new French oak. · Deeply colored. Vibrant and deep aromas of black raspberries, blackberries, toast and herbs. Darkly fruited and fullbodied in style with soft tannins and a strikingly velvety texture. The flavors are complimented by an earthiness and subtle oak char. Clearly one of the top wines from the Carneros region in this vintage. Reviewed February 12, 2009 ARTICLE »

2006 Donum Estate Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., $65. · Deep perfume of cherries and berries with aggressive oak toast. Tasty cherry and raspberry flavors with a woody edge leading to an echo of grapefruit peel on the bright finish. Smoothly textured with mild dry tannins. A little more oak than I like keeping it from a higher score. The oak may integrate with further cellaring. POP 90, WS 95. Reviewed January 22, 2010 ARTICLE »

2006 Donum Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., $65. 95% de-stemmed. 5-day cold soak. Native fermentation. Aged on the lees 11 months in 75% new French oak. · Aromas of black cherries, plums, wildflowers, oak and a slight green note. Well-endowed core of blue and black fruit with accents of earth, mocha and cola. Robust and succulent but well defined by balancing soft tannins and lithe acidity. Pretty good but not exceptional. Very good (-). Reviewed October 29, 2009 ARTICLE »

StmlImage: invalid literal for int() with base 10: 'thumb_paul_lato.jpg'
[[image ]]

2005 Donum Estate Pinot Noir

(not released) · A brooding wine with great structure and tremendous concentration. Reviewed March 5, 2007 ARTICLE »

2005 Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir

850 cases, $65. This is the fourth release of this superb wine which is among the best Carneros has to offer. Average bloom to harvest time for The Donum Estate Vineyard is 115 days, but in 2005 it was 130 days. The extended hang time has produced a special wine. 100% de-stemmed, aged in 75% new French oak. · Attractive and vigorous red cherry and red current fruits filled out with herbal overtones and lavish oak. Powerful, but yet silky and elegant. Beautifully balanced. I have tasted this wine on several separate occasions and it has always grabbed me. Reviewed July 7, 2008 ARTICLE »

2005 Donum Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 200 cases, $65. Inaugural Russian River Valley release. Remarkably long 130 day hang time. 100% de-stemmed. 5-day cold soak, native fermentation, aged on lees for 11 months in 75% new French oak. · Dark reddish-purple color. The aromas of black cherries, black raspberries and woodshed draw you in. Very tasty raspberry and blackberry attack with a hint of cola and brown spice. A charming wine that has aged beautifully. Nicely proportioned, soft in the mouth with supple tannins. Perfect now. Very good. Reviewed October 29, 2009 ARTICLE »

2004 Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir

Unreleased, bottled January 2006. Blending trials found that the addition of 10% Ferguson Block fruit to the estate juice produced the preferred wine. · This is an outrageous Pinot. The perfume of spicy cherries, licorice and sandalwood is intoxicating. A little less earthy and more fruit forward than the 2003 vintage. The balance is spot on and the peacock tail at the finish seems to linger forever. Heaven sent. Reviewed July 10, 2006

2004 Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir

$60. · A flashy drink with that magic Burgandy je ne sais quoi. Reviewed March 5, 2007 ARTICLE »

2003 Donum Estate Carneros Estate Grown Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 575 cases, $60. Cool weather at bloom caused a light set and yields were only 1.88 tons per acre. 100% de-stemmed, cold soaked for 4 days, aged on the lees in 75% new French oak for 11 months. · Expressive nose starring black cherries and hinting of Provencal herbs and smoke. A full flavored black fruited wine with a soft texture and gentle finish. Smoky oak accents carry thru and persist on the aftertaste. Reviewed February 12, 2009 ARTICLE »

2003 Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir

$60. · Very mellow now with dusty tannins. Plums and game lead the flavors. Reviewed March 5, 2007 ARTICLE »

2003 Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 575 cases, $60. Cool weather at bloom cause a light set and yields were low (4.14 lbs/vine, 1.88 tons/acre). Harvest started on September 17 and was completed in 7 days. The winemaking regimen was the same as for the 2002 vintage. 100% estate fruit. This wine took extra time to come around and was kept in the bottle longer than usual before release (January 2006). · This wine is all about texture. There is plenty of structure and tannin in this wine, but it has a charming bent of delicacy to the flavors and the mouth feel that only Pinot Noir can offer. The nose entices with dark crushed berries, spice, herbs and a hint of oak. There are layers of complex flavors here including luscious dark fruits, exotic woods and mushrooms. A distinctively earthy and complete Pinot Noir that has that Pinot fabulosity. Reviewed July 10, 2006

2002 Donum Estate Carneros Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., 458 cases, $60. The 2002 growing season was moderate until September when record heat spikes began and harvest started. Yields were 4 lbs/vine, 1.8 tons/acre. 100% estate fruit. The grapes were 100% de-stemmed, cold soaked for 4 days, and aged on the lees in 75% new French oak for 11 months. · With some air time, the aromatics open up beautifully revealing deep, black cherry essence, restrained toasty oak notes and leather highlights. The opulent and layered dark fruits are enhanced by a deft touch of oak. The wine finishes with fine tannins. This wine is still a baby, tight and concentrated, and needing time for the tannins to mature. Reviewed July 10, 2006