Donkey and Goat

Owner(s) Jared Brandt, Tracey Brandt
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Tracey and Jared Brandt are the "donkey and goat" behind these sustainably farmed wines operating out of a 2,800-square-foot warehouse space in Berkeley, California. They follow a path apart from mainstream winemaking, eschewing commercial yeasts, using sulfur dioxide only in the spring following harvest, and fermenting in old wood and concrete vessels. They source grapes from non-irrigated vineyards, preferring less-manicured vineyards in the Sierra Foothills.

Jared hails from Salt Lake and Tracey was raised in Texas and North Carolina. They met while working for the IGN gaming company. In 2001 Jared left his job to become a winemaker. The couple went to France seeking an internship and ended in working in the Rhone Valley.

A single Pinot Noir was produced in 2009 from Broken Leg Vineyard in the Anderson Valley. Total production is 3,000 cases annually.

Reviewed Wines

2014 Donkey & Goat Helluva Vineyard Anderson Valley Pinot Noir

13.4% alc., 185 cases, $34. Feral fermentation, aged in older French oak barrels. “Nothing but grapes and SO2.” Unfined and unfiltered. · Moderate reddish purple hue in the glass. Aromas of cherry, nori and stem lead to a wine that displays purpose and focus on the palate, featuring a core of cherry fruit back by noticeable but supportive oak. The flavor reminds of freshly picked grapes. The wine has a commendable acid spine and a noteworthy finish that refuses to relinquish its hold. Score: 91. Reviewed July 24, 2016 ARTICLE »

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