2017 L'Espérance Pinot Noir
L’Enfant Prodigue of Soliste
In 2005, we made our first Pinot Noir from the family vineyard (only 143 cases produced, that’s it!) located in a unique site that we believed would grant us the ability to craft wines with a style that would satisfy our infatuation for the great Burgundies that we love. In 2006, L’Espérance was born out of this vineyard focusing on a clone that would reflect a wine of great aromatics and purity. In 2009, from the same site, we challenged ourselves to make L’Espérance from that single vineyard, a single clone, and allocate a single cooperage barrel house in France to deliver uncompromised focus to the wine. The MonoClone® was born and we registered the trademark to protect our beliefs.
Having said that, we did not become stubborn about the MonoClone or infatuated by the idea, the wines had to deliver. If they did not, we would have gone back to blending the clones. Our MonoClone focus has produced compelling wines, and so here we are, almost a decade later enjoying unique, compelling wines – all so different but sharing the same commitment to elegance, length, and complexity. Vive la différence!
2017 was marked by a very wet winter and spring (finally!), followed by a remarkable heat spike over Labor Day. We were very fortunate to have all of our wines safely in barrel before the wildfires made this a vintage we'll never forget.
2017 L’Espérance MonoClone Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
Le Regard / The Look
Extraordinary robe of red Beryl Gem with mineral and pulpy density.
Le Nez / The Nose
Intoxicating nose…Highly perfumed with expressive aromas of kirschy cherries, raspberry liquor is interwoven with violets, sous-bois, and espresso grounds. As the wine opens up, the bouquet becomes more opulent and sweeter, gathering notes of morello cherries laced with orange rinds and wooded tannins.
Degustation / The Taste
The palate is fresh from the start; a wonderful structure, outstanding focus on blue and red berries framing a full-bodied wine, pure and sappy at the core with dry extracts that serve to buffer the powerful tannic spine. This is a hedonistic Pinot, very expressive, complex, and long. The middle palate delivers an exotic and precise concoction of peppery red plums, blueberry vanilla compote, kirsch infused cherries, all encased in a condensed jewelry box (ecrin). The exotic fruit concentration is magnified with layers of cocoa nibs, licorice, burnt orange peel, dried herbals, and game birds. The elegant wood tannins bring the wine to full harmony with earthy and dry tea tones. The finish is opulent and vibrant, at once silky and structured for aging. The length of this wine promises the full potential for years to come, characterized by the perfectly ripe (but not overripe) fruit laced with bitter chocolate, and a high pitch of peppery cranberry acidity. A stellar wine for years to come with its soul in Cote de Nuits.
L’ESPÉRANCE 2017…Bonnes Mares revisited