2023 Gamay NouveauBloque Triste
From Rorick Heritage Vineyard's own Bloque Triste, the Sad Block -- a tale of delicious woe! We grafted this Gamay onto 15 year old vines in 2015, and promptly faced a string of consecutive disastrous years trying to grow this fruit.
In the spring of 2016, deer ate every newly grown green shoot in the block, killing over a third of the vines.
In 2017, a late frost killed 50% of the vines that had survived. So, in 2018, we replanted all the missing spaces with a selection of Gamay clones sourced from Foundation Plant Services, at UC Davis -- only to discover that most of what they delivered was Garganega, not Gamay.
Finally, in 2020, we replaced nearly all of the Garganega with Gamay, and this year, nine vintages after Gamay was first introduced into our vineyard, we FINALLY have enough fruit to make both a still wine as well as a barrel of Nouveau. It's never felt so good to be so Triste!
Picked on October 3, 2023, we gently thread a small portion of the grapes and used our hands to push the clusters beneath the fermenting must each day. The native fermentation was flawless and manic conversion occurred quickly. By the end of fermentation the wine was giving such pretty and characters of Gamay that we decided it would be fun to seal those flavors in bottle and release half as a nouveau while the other half continued to develop in barrel. This wine was bottled on November 9, 2023.
- AppellationCalaveras County
- VineyardRorick Heritage Vineyard
- SoilLimestone and schist
- Farming MethodOrganic
- Release DateNovember 16 2023
- Harvest DateOctober 3 2023