On a terrace of Sonoma Mountain at 1150' elevation, the van der Kamp vineyard has been farmed for over 100 years and sustains some of the oldest Pinot noir vines in Sonoma County. A trout pond, fruit trees, prayer flags, Native American artifacts and a few roosters are found around the north-facing vineyard, which traverses soils from the reddish volcanic loam of the "Red Shoulder" area to a deeper, darker clay loam region.
Offering enticing aromas of cran-raspberry, baking spices, hints of pine duff and eucalyptus, this wine is lifted and bright on the nose. The palate entry brings distinct minerality traced by notes of sarsaparilla, plum, dark cherry clove and pronounced, yet silky tannins which broaden through the finish.
The Russian River Valley has come to be known as "America’s Burgundy," and DeLoach is proud to have been an important factor in this distinction. DeLoach's wines have won numerous accolades and scored many 90+ ratings over the years. The Wine Spectator’s James Laube called DeLoach "one of California’s best producers of Chardonnay," and Wine and Spirits has proclaimed DeLoach "Winery of the Year" nine times.
DeLoach's mission is to produce exceptional wines that spotlight the singular personality of the Russian River Valley in a socially responsible, environmentally sensitive way. They seek to foster a better understanding of the Valley's unique terroir, with its rare and bountiful convergence of the sea, the soil and the stars.
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Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about half as much wine as its northeasterly neighbor. Because of its vast size, however, Sonoma is able to achieve far more diversity within its borders, which include sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid-back and down-to-earth, but the wines are serious and well-made, ranging in style from subtle and elegant to rich and powerful. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
The largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
It's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.