*2016 Occidental SWK Vineyard Pinot Noir
Occidental-Kistler Vineyards 'SWK Vineyard', Sonoma Coast, USA 2016
The 2016 Pinot Noir SWK Vineyard emerges from the highest point of Steve Kistler's Bodega Headlands property. Vibrant and exquisitely beautiful, the 2016 is a striking wine that is going to need a number of years to come together. There is a lot here, but the 2016 is painfully closed at this stage. Dark red cherry, plum, blood orange, mint and rose petal all develop in the glass, with bright saline notes that give the wine shape and energy.
The SWK Vineyard is located in the upper northwest corner of the Bodega Headlands property, at an elevation of 750 feet. Its soils are similar to the highly varied sandstone soils of Bodega Headlands but with less topsoil and nutrients. SWK lies in the coolest corner of the property and is most directly exposed to the prevailing onshore winds. The vineyard was propagated with a proprietary blend of field selections from two grand cru vineyards in Vosne Romanée. It is dry farmed and planted with a permanent cover crop of native fescue grasses.
Each year, SWK is the lowest yielding vineyard, typically setting the loosest clusters with the most millerandage. These unusually small 50-60 gram clusters have berries with a high skin-to-juice ratio and stems that receive more sunlight to reach full maturity. The SWK fruit is generally lowest in pH with a high level of natural acidity and mature tannins, and receives our gentlest extraction. Recently we have fermented this wine with more whole clusters and are pleased with the results.