The grapes are picked between 25 and 26 degrees brix and are hand selected at harvest time by Lee Martinelli Sr. who walks through the vineyard and tastes them. The fruit samples are then brought to the winery lab where wine maker Helen Turley tastes the juice and decides when to pick according to the concentration of flavors. After picking, the whole berries undergo a long cool fermentation, with indigenous yeast, to generate skin contact and extract fruit character. The juice is gravity fed into small oak barrels with a touch of residual sugar remaining to complete the fermentation process in barrel until dry. It is then allowed to rest and mature in 75% new French oak on its gross lees for 10 months without interruption. The grapes, juice, and then wine are minimally handled. The finished wine is unfined, unfiltered, neither cold nor heat stabilized and contain naturally occurring sediment.
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