2018 Littorai One Acre Pinot Noir

2018 Littorai One Acre Pinot Noir

¥16,940 (incl. tax)

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The One Acre vineyard sits at an elevation of 500 meters in the mountains northeast of Boonville, in Mendocino County’s Anderson Valley. The windy site, farmed using organic and biodynamic methods, produces some of the richest, most seductive and complex wines in the Littorai portfolio. While Littorai’s One Acre Pinot Noir is a new offering for us here at Hotei Wines, the vineyard provided the fruit for Ted and Heidi Lemon’s very first California Pinot back in 1993. In 2016, they purchased the vineyard (and even expanded its size to 3.5 acres) to ensure access to these fine grapes forever. The 2018 is dark in color with aromas of rose hip tea, dried flowers, cocoa and earthy notes. On entry, it’s rich, balancing fine-grained, delicate tannins with intense acidity. Give it some time to open up — either in the glass or in the cellar. 

Winery


Winery Description

Ted Lemon is a winegrower, not a winemaker. Winegrowing implies that careful and conscientious farming is the primary step in crafting wines that express their terroir. Littorai was founded in 1993 after Ted and Heidi Lemon took an epic wine tasting tour from Walla Walla, Washington, to Santa Barbara in search of a spot that would yield great Pinot Noir. They became convinced that Northern California coast offered the best potential. Littorai’s wines have since become the benchmark for a new style of California Pinot Noir that strives to be a “wine of place.” These wines are lighter in color and alcohol and less extravagant and ripe, but strikingly fresh, pure, and vibrant – aromatic and flavorful without being weighty or opulent. Burgundy was an early influence on Lemon. He studied enology at the Université de Dijon, apprenticed at several Burgundy houses and was appointed head of Domaine Guy Roulot in Meursault – all by the age of 25! But though Burgundy has been a model for Littorai, it was never a template. Instead, he lets the terroir of his vineyards suggest how best to cultivate them and craft their wines. These vineyards are located along the littoral, the coastal edge of California, on rugged hillsides in the Anderson Valley (Mendocino County) and along the Sonoma Coast. Here ocean fogs bless the vines with an extended growing season, but more importantly, the soils are so diverse (as a result of the area’s turbulent geology) that even nearby vineyards can produce wines of different aroma, flavor and ageability. Littorai focuses on single vineyard Pinot Noir and Chardonnay but also makes two appellation bottlings with those barrels or vineyard lots that do not meet the highest standards. Littorai owns just one estate vineyard (The Pivot, near Sebastopol), but sources the rest via “by the acre” contracts or long term leases that allow Lemon to plant and work the vineyards as he pleases, even if the yields are tiny. A firm believer in biodynamie, the estate operates an integrated farm, with vineyards, pastures, and woodland combined into one holistic unit, but even the non-estate vineyards are farmed organically without any fertilizers beyond vineyard compost. Winemaking involves fermenting the Pinot Noir with some amount of whole clusters in traditional open-top fermenters with natural yeasts and without (or with very little) sulphur or other additives. The wines age in (partially new) French oak for up to 16 months. If rich, mouth-coating, opulent black fruit is what you expect in a California Pinot Noir, Littorai’s wines may provoke a surprise. Prepare for floral and red fruit aromas, vibrant flavors, fresh acidity and a tannic structure that will allow the wines to develop and blossom over the years.

About this Wine


Country USA
Region California
Appellation(s) Anderson Valley (Mendocino)
Winery Littorai
Vintage 2018
Color Red
Varietal(s) Pinot Noir
Closure Cork
Volume 750ml
Bottle Size 8.5 x 29.5
Case Size 35.0 x 27.0 x 30.5
Alcohol 13.3%
Product Code LT18OAP
UPC NONE

Owning & Enjoying


Tasting notes

Aromas of rose hip tea, dried flowers, cocoa, cedar and earthy notes precede a rich attack, an entry that balances fine-grained, mouth-coating tannins with intense acidity.

Production


Vinification

Fermented with about 27% whole clusters, on native yeasts, in both stainless steel and wood. The wine aged for 16 months in French oak (25% new).

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