Joseph Jewell Wines
2010 Floodgate Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir •Floodgate Vineyard
California: Russian River Valley
Open the Floodgate!
Today’s Joseph Jewell Wines 2010 Floodgate Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir hails from one of the most well-known and most successful of Pinot Noir vineyards in the Russian River Valley. The Floodgate Vineyard has enjoyed a long and prestigious history, with Gary Farrell, Alysian, Cartograph Wines and others sourcing Pinot Noir there. Today’s wine was made from select blocks of hillside vines where exposure to sun and the elements is optimal.
Whereas most wineries are already releasing their 2011 wines, Joseph Jewell chose to wait until the wine was perfect. This is quite a feat for any winery, as release dates can sometimes be motivated by desire for cash-flow over readiness. Joseph Jewell chooses the long and careful pathway from vineyard to your table. This elegant wine gets its fine ruby color from an extended 5 day cold soak. The ruby juice then moves on to rest in the finest French oak barrels - until the wine is ready to go to bottle. From there, it rests until it is ready to release to you.
This wine is classic Russian River, with lovely fruit that is balanced against elegant elements of spice and earthiness. Fruits really come alive as you spin the wine in your glass. Please decant or swirl this wonderful wine for best results. One of our esteemed panelists, whom we call “Dr. Pinot”, said this of the wine, “When you first open this wine, you say, ‘hmm’. Then, after five minutes, ‘HMMM’. After ten minutes, ‘YEAH!’” We agree with Dr. Pinot, who also said, “This wine has very fine tannins and much more structure than most 2010s that I’ve tasted.”
Lovely dark plum with bright ruby edges. At the core, the wine shows as very slightly opaque.
Dark cherry and black raspberry fruit meld with pomegranate, wild strawberry and cooked cranberry. Underneath, the wine shows richer aromas of rich spice, cherry candy and subtle toasty vanilla. One of our more experienced panelists also detected a hint of coffee.
Leads with bright cranberry, orange peel, alpine strawberry, plum skin, subtle spice and a hint of sandalwood.
This wine has a long-lasting finish that is loaded with plenty of ripe fruit that presents all across the palate. Subtle vine tannin adds a hint of dryness that encroaches from the edges and gradually moves inward.
This is a very food-friendly wine that would work with many different foods. We’ll be enjoying ours with spinach salad with crumbled goat cheese, fresh strawberries and pancetta with an aged balsamic dressing. Fettuccini carbonara would also be divine.
What the Winery Says
The 2010 Floodgate Vineyard Pinot Noir possesses medium intensity and bright clarity in appearance with a core ruby color. The developing nose shows medium intensity with aromas of dark cherries, plums, a hint of tobacco leaf and coffee bean intertwined with fresh thyme spice. The palate shows medium acidity and body with medium to medium plus flavor intensity and length. With red fruit and earthy flavors confirming the nose, additional notes of cinnamon and clove are delivered on a rich, silky texture. Tannins are ripe and polished with balanced acidity leading to a long, elegant and nuanced finish.
90 Point Review - The Prince of Pinot Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Initially shy, but pleasing aromas of dark red cherries and berries take on more intensity over time in the glass. Mid weight flavors of Bing cherry and dark red berries are complimented by a note of savory herbs and cola. Soft tannins, a silky mouth presence, and respectable finishing length. A charming wine.
- Adrian Jewell Manspeaker and Micah Joseph Wirth
- 90 Points - The Prince of Pinot
- Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California
- Floodgate Vineyard
- 10 months in French oak, 33% new
About the Winery
Joseph Jewell Wines was born in a garage in Windsor in 2006, when two good friends, Micah Joseph Wirth and Adrian Jewell Manspeaker, created their first wine, a Pinot Noir. The 2006 Pinot Noir crop in Northern California was a large one, and several vineyards had grapes to spare. Adrian and Micah considered several options, and finally sourced a ton of grapes from the Toboni Vineyard in the Russian River Valley. They invested in two French Oak barrels and a small basket press…and they were on their way to a very successful first vintage, producing 50 cases of a full-bodied, rich Pinot Noir.
While they were washing out their barrels at the Gary Farrell Winery one day, they tossed around ideas for a name for their fledgling winery. They wanted something that represented them both, yet also had a connection to each of them individually. Combining their middle names, Joseph Jewell rolled off their tongues. They created an elegant coat of arms for their logo and a distinctive label and bottle to match the quality of their 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.