2003 Russian River Valley Mondeuse
Within our Two Acres vineyard are 99 vines of Mondeuse. Mondeuse, grown in the Savoie of France, is known for its bracing acidity and tannin. Hence, we always pick and ferment this variety separately, either blending it away or bottling it separately in the years where merited. Such was the case with the 2003. As usual, the wine was left on the skins for over 45 days to soften the tannins. And while the Mondeuse in this vintage was the ripest we've ever achieved (it is a very late ripener, usually the last lot we pick), make no mistake about it, this is a very structured, age-worthy wine.
The color of this wine is so seductive. Not particularly dark but a beautiful cherry red with an incredible sheen and luminescence. Really captivating. The cherry theme continues to the nose with hi-toned dusty, bright cherry aromas. A supple, full-bodied entry leads to a whip-lash of tannin on the finish. Very northern Italian! While tannin pigs will certainly enjoy this now, my suggestion is to put it away until at least 2010. It should drink well for a decade after that, perhaps even two. (MRO - 8/7/05)