Idlewild 2017 Dolcetto, Fox Hill Vineyard, Mendocino
Item Number: 14035
Sub Region: Mendocino
Appellation/AVA: Mendocino County
Estate Grown Wine: No
Vineyard Designation: Fox Hill Vineyard
Type: Wine - Red
Bottle Size: 750 ml
Alc by Vol(%): 12.4
Viticulture: Practicing Organic
Soil Type: Gravel and sandstone
Case Production: 275
Vineyard Notes: Fox Hill Vineyard is without a doubt one of the most unique vineyards in Northern California. Located southeast of Ukiah on Mendocino’s Talmage Bench, the soils are well drained with high concentrations of gravel and sandstone. What makes this site so unique though is the fact that Lowell Stone decided to follow his passion, to buck every market trend, and to simply plant what he was interested in planting. Many trips to Italy turned to inspiration and the wild spectrum of varieties began to take root. The cooler tree sheltered and northwest facing blocks are appropriately planted with varietals that originate in Italy’s Piedmont.
Vintage Notes: Rain! Lots and lots of rain! After five years of drought, it was nearly surreal as local rivers flooded over their banks and lakes filled to their brims. Winter was wet, with a normal bud-break, and quite a normal (albeit wet) Spring. Everything kept rolling along smoothly all through summer, and despite the intense heat, the canopies were lush and provided plenty of shade and cooling. Right as things seemed perfectly on track, a late summer heat spike set in across the North Coast, and the game suddenly changed. A month of harvest was compressed into a week, but the vineyard held on beautifully. For those who picked fast and furiously and are working with varieties that can handle some heat, it is a gorgeous vintage.
Winemaking Notes: The grapes were brought in and sorted to larger fermenting bins where they were partially foot trodden, and all of the stems were included. This practice lends several things including floral lift, spice, and structure; and, it also leads to a very healthy fermentation. Native yeast and bacteria were responsible for the primary and secondary fermentation. As the wine neared dryness, it was basket pressed and then put down to neutral puncheon for nearly eleven months. Then, a year in bottle completed its aging.
Tasting Notes: Fermented 100% whole cluster with partial foot treading, this vintage shows the contrast of bright freshness against a firm structure. The nose shows red cherry, earth, roses, almond, and anise. The mouth is medium-bodied with freshness and firm tannin on the finish. It is joyful and fully serious all at once.