Joseph Jewell Wines
2010 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
California: Russian River Valley
The Family Jewell
We are incredibly choosy about the Pinot Noirs that we feature, so much so that we rejected every Pinot that we tasted during our previous two tasting panels! This is great news for our Operatives, who can be assured that any Pinot that we showcase has been carefully vetted.
Today’s 2010 Hallberg Vineyard Russian River Pinot Noir, from our friends at Joseph Jewell Wines, provided us with a welcome respite from our recent run of Pinot bad luck. In fact, when our tasting panel tasted this incredible wine we all did cartwheels, a jig and a series of joyous high-fives!
The Hallberg Vineyard is a very special Pinot Noir vineyard that is situated in the geographic heart of the Russian River Valley. Gary Farrell Winery makes incredible Pinot here. So does Emeritus and Gary Farrell’s new Elysian Winery.
Today’s limited-production wine is an elegant, delicious and highly sought-after treat. We are very proud to present you with this delightful wine, which we offer to you with our heartiest recommendation.
Dark and slightly opaque, with a garnet core and pretty purple edges.
Plump and full on the nose, with plum, fresh black cherry, blackberry compote and pomegranate. Underneath, lightly toasted applewood adds some intrigue.
Rich and full on the palate, with stewed, reduced black fruit of plum, blackberry, blueberry and nectarine. Underneath, a touch of twiggy briar patch adds a lovely rounding and balance to the flavors.
Long and lingering, leading with fresh, bright cranberry and pomegranate. These gradually give way to a plushness that transports briar and dusty dried earth to the far corners of the palate.
Enjoy this wine with a wild mushroom risotto with chunks of pork belly.
What the Winery Says
In 2010, we were very excited when an opportunity presented itself to work with a vineyard that we loved - Hallberg Vineyard. We worked to develop a relationship with the owners and farmers of the vineyard, which, I have to say, is the source of some of my favorite Pinot Noirs. This stunning site bears the name of the former owners, Don and Marcia Hallberg, who in 1999, with aging apple trees past their prime, sold the 115-acre orchard to Emeritus Vineyards.
With soils and climate ideal for growing Pinot Noir, the land was returned to vineyards after 65 years and the Hallberg name continues as a hallmark of Russian River Valley agriculture. Kirk Lokka is the vineyard manager at Hallberg. He has a keen eye for detail and knows his vines better that anyone. We will be sourcing fruit from two different blocks, Block C Clone 777 and Block I Pommard.
- Adrian Jewell Manspeaker and Micah Joseph Wirth
About the Winery
When friends and winemakers Micah Joseph Wirth and Adrian Jewell Manspeaker teamed up in 2006, they made their first wine together in a Windsor garage. With two French oak barrels, a small basket press, and exactly one ton of Russian River Valley grapes, they produced 50 cases of single-vineyard Pinot Noir. With no winery affiliation or property of their own, they combined their middle names for the new venture and pooled their resources to build their own wine company dedicated to capturing the unique terroir of single-vineyard sites. The success of that first release enabled Micah and Adrian to invest seriously in their project and grow their garage experiment to a 2500-case production of exceptional wines.
Since that first Pinot Noir, they’ve created several wines, including Russian River Valley Appian Way Pinot Noir, Dry Creek Valley Grist Zinfandel, and Alexander Valley Redwood Ranch Sauvignon Blanc, all with distinct noses and finishes that reflect their unique style of winemaking.
Winemaker Micah Joseph Wirth
Micah is the fourth generation in a family of wine pioneers. Raised in Alexander Valley, his interest in wine started at only eight years old when he accompanied his winemaker father Chris Wirth to work at Preston Vineyards. Once he was old enough to be helpful in the cellar, Micah learned the basics of winemaking from his father at ElvenGlade and Raptor Ridge in Oregon. The logical next step was enology classes at UC Davis, and then grueling 15-hour days of harvest internships at Chalk Hill Winery.
A year later, he was hired on full-time at Gary Farrell Winery. For the next 7 years, he worked with highly regarded winemakers Gary Farrell and Susan Reed. The hard work fueled Micah’s passion for winemaking and his ambition to start his own label. His tenure as Cellar Master at Gary Farrell was instrumental in developing partnerships with grape growers and securing top-quality fruit for Joseph Jewell.
Winemaker Adrian Jewell Manspeaker
Having grown up on the fog-shrouded northern coast of California, Adrian learned early on to appreciate its complicated patchwork of micro-climates. When he moved to Sonoma County, his upbringing sparked an interest in the origin of wine and the evolution from vineyard to barrel to bottle.
His wine country location allowed him to conveniently study winemaking and viticulture at UC Davis’s extension program and take business management courses on the side. He put theory into practice at C. Donatiello and lent a hand at Peay Vineyards, then teamed up with Micah and the two became business partners.
Adrian’s intense drive and commitment are apparent in every detail of his work, from his relationships with the growers to the design of the labels to the overall quality of the finished product.