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Additional Varietals

Many other varietals develop beautifully in the long, mild growing season offered in Bennett Valley.

 

Bennett Valley Merlot
Bennett Valley Pinot Noir
Bennett Valley Grenache
Bennett Valley Cabernet Franc & Cabernet Sauvignon

 

Bennett Valley Merlot

With its close proximity to the Pacific Ocean, Jackson Park is at the front line of the cooling effects of the Petaluma Wind Gap which brings marine winds and coastal fog into the valley.  These conditions help to maintain the grapes’ aromatic qualities, acidity and tannin structure." 
Steve Heimoff, Wine Enthusiast  describing the 2006 Matanzas Creek, Jackson Park Merlot (05/2010)

 

Our Bennett Valley Merlot offers rich fruit and chocolate flavors as well as structure and balance so often missing in this variety when grown in warmer climates. You’ll commonly find more exotic scents as well: cherry cola, sandalwood and licorice meld with white pepper and intriguing spice notes on a long, luscious finish.

 

 

Bennett Valley Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir only reveals its subtle brilliance under certain conditions and a long, cool growing season is an absolute must.  As new vineyards are planted and existing vineyards are replanted or converted, Pinot Noir acreage has steadily increased in the Valley.  While only a handful of Bennett Valley-appellated Pinot Noirs have been released to date, most growers and winemakers don’t think it premature to expect great things from this varietal down the road.

 

“The small isolated location, combined with the steady cold coastal influence, makes Bennett Valley one of the most unique and potentially highest quality vineyard sites anywhere on the West Coast for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.” 
Patrick Sullivan, Winemaker - Grey Stack Cellars.

 

Pinot Noir grown here shows dark fruits, chewy dried currant, wild berry, provencal herbs and spice. Full bodied with flavors of plums and black berry.  Pepper with anise. Chewy tannins.

 

 

Bennett Valley Grenache

 

Charles Olken of Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine writes…There is a reason why Grenache is so popular around the world. When made right, it is rich, fruity, accessible, fairly supple and delivers easy to enjoy raspberry/ripe strawberry flavors with good vinosity. There is a reason why California has not made much Grenache like that. We have not …….looked to plant it in locations where it will prosper.”  Olken continues ”Wines like this one make us hope that more Grenache will be planted in cool-area vineyards. …This is Grenache that has aging potential writ large and extends the notion of the varieties range and possibilities in California.”
2007 Grey Stack Grenache, Dry Stack Vineyard (July 2010)

 

Grenache grown in Bennett Valley exhibits black cherry, red fruits, licorice, herbs, charcoal and earth.  Medium to full palate with rich, savory texture, solid concentration and long finish.  Tight and structured.

 

 

 

Bennett Valley Cabernet Franc & Cabernet Sauvignon

Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon also have a home in Bennett Valley.  The acreage planted to these varieties is generally limited to higher elevations and extreme southern exposures.  These vineyards tend to produce extremely low per acre yields even by Bennett Valley standards.  Thus, far the critics have agreed that the resulting wines can be well worth the effort.

 

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