Nero d'Avola 2018
100% Nero d'Avola
63% Benson Ranch Vineyard, Ukiah, Mendocino County: 14 year old dry farmed (no irrigation) vines, gravelly loam soil.
25% Fox Hill Vineyard, Talmage Bench, Mendocino County: 33 year old vines (as far as we know the oldest Nero d’Avola in CA), sandy loam soils.
12% Chiarito Vineyard, Ukiah, Mendocino County: we purchased fruit in 2018 but took over the vineyard lease and farming in 2019; 27-year old vines, head trained, no till, loam soil.
All three vineyards are farmed according to organic principles without the use of pesticides, herbicides, and synthetic fungicides.
Intoxicating nose; versatile and balanced with both bright acidity and dark forest fruit; dusty tannins that are approachable now, but this wine can also be aged; elegant and precise.
Martha's flagship wine inspired by her time working at COS in Sicily. She is one of the very few California producers working with Nero d'Avola.
The beauty of Nero d’Avola is its Chiaroscuro-like nature: brightness from its ability to hold onto acidity in warm Mediterranean climates, and darkness from its characteristic forest fruits. I spent a very impactful vintage working with this grape at COS in Sicily, so the fact that Nero d’Avola even exists in California—AND I get to work with it in both the vineyard and cellar—makes my heart happy. While everyone else is clamoring for cool climate sites along coastal California, I am proud to be looking inland, where the hotter climate and shorter spring season make low-input farming a reality. I still want to make elegant wines, so it just means thinking outside of the box with the choice of varieties. Nero d’Avola is a perfect natural fit.
Destemmed, fermented in concrete tank until dry. Pressed and put to neutral barrel on lees. After 12 months: racked off lees, vineyard components blended, and put back to barrel for a total of 18 months barrel aging.
Production: 565 cases
13.5% alcohol. Unfiltered. At bottling (February 2020): free SO2 11 mg/L, total SO2 33 mg/L.