Vintage: 2015

Vineyard: Crowley Station Vineyards

Appellation: Eola-Amity Hills AVA

Harvest Date: September 18, 2015

Clones: Own-rooted Colmar clone

Soils: Marine sedimentary

Brix at harvest: 20.5

Skin Maceration: 16 days in 2 open-top half-ton fermenters 

Aging: 6 months in neutral French oak

Final Alcohol: 11.4%

Production: 47 cases

Our Thoughts: We didn't think anything could top the craziness of the 2014 season...until 2015. Records again were completely busted. Heat, tonnage, insanity. The good news is that we learned from 2014 (and 2013, and 2012), and harvested in two passes, once at the beginning of September (our earliest pick at the vineyard yet) and again in mid-September as moderating temperatures that month allowed. Crowley Station Vineyards produced its highest crop load ever in 2015 (a whopping 2 tons/acre without fruit-thinning), which allowed us to experiment even more than before.

After a few vintages of developing our Pinot gris program, we just couldn't help ourselves. Each time we went to blend the one 'red' barrel into the 'white' barrels, we kept saying "damn, this red stuff is good, I wish we could just bottle it on its own." So this is the year that we stopped wishing and went for it. This inaugural vintage of "black label" may be our most favorite wine we've made to date. With aromas of red clay, cherries, and old leather-bound books; and a rich tanning structure braced by bright acidity, you might be tempted to guess this as a light-bodied Pinot noir. We would be very pleased by the comparison.

Suggested Retail Price: $20