2016 Dry Riesling

Rutherford, Napa Valley

Rutherford, Napa Valley

2016 Dry Riesling Rutherford, Napa Valley - Calder Wine Company
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I’m very happy with the 2016
Riesling, which as always is sourced from a single head-trained block right in
the middle of the Rutherford bench. Thanks to low yields, a bit of skin
contact, and extended aging on the lees, the new vintage is bursting with
Riesling’s hallmark floral aromas, with just a touch of petrol. On the palate,
savory complexity dominates, with flint, mineral, and spice notes working in
with rich apricot fruit. I was able to get ample acidity this vintage with a
refreshingly low pH, giving the ’16 a clean, crisp finish.


Riesling in Rutherford? Made justly famous by its superb benchland
Cabernet Sauvignons, Rutherford is nowadays a somewhat unexpected place to find
Riesling grapes.  However, some of the
first winegrowers in the Napa Valley were German immigrants, and naturally
propagated varieties that they were familiar with from the vineyards of their
homeland, including Riesling. Planted in the early 1970s, this 0.66-acre,
head-trained plot on the Rossi Ranch is a holdover from these early days of
California winemaking, and a lasting connection to Napa’s viticultural history.
In addition to making the wine from this block, I perform much of the handwork
as part of my work at Frog’s Leap Winery, which owns and farms the vineyard. As
with all vineyards at Frog’s Leap, the Riesling block is dry-farmed and
certified organic.


Winemaking: 1.73 tons of Riesling were harvested on August 26th,
2016. All of the grapes were foot-stomped in their picking bins about 20
minutes prior to being pressed. The wine was settled in tank for 3 days prior
to fermentation, with half of the juice being racked into neutral oak barrels
and half into another stainless steel tank. Fermentation took place over a
three-week period, with all lots finishing fermentation on the strength of
their native yeast. The lots were left on their lees for 10 months before being
bottled on July 7th, 2016.

Technical Information
  • Blend 100% Riesling
  • Winemaker Rory Williams
  • Country
  • Region Napa Valley
  • Appellation Rutherford
  • Vineyard Rachel Rossi Vineyard
  • Farming Method Organic, Dry-Farmed
  • Residual Sugar 0.06%
  • Alcohol 13.0%
  • PH 3.30
  • TA 0.639g/100mLs
  • Production 100 cases