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Bravium Signal Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011

Pinot Noir from Mendocino Ridge, Mendocino, California
  • WE90
14.3% ABV
  • WE93
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14.3% ABV

Winemaker Notes

In a quest to find high elevation, cool climate sites in Northern California, Derek knew immediately that Signal Ridge Vineyard would produce complex and intriguing Pinot Noir. A Pinot-Geek’sdream, the site stands at 2600' elevation - the highest planting inMendocino Ridge, with diverse soils of clay, loam, and sandstone that belie simple descriptions. In his first year working on the site, Derek created micro-block designates that revealed the vineyard's multifaceted character - and so impressed the vineyard-owner Roger Scommegna, that they decided to give Derek partial exclusivity of the site, turning away premier customers such as Failla. This wine reveals purity, structure and a level of finesse found in the great Pinot producers of our time.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
A larger selection from Signal Ridge, Bravium’s main bottling is still tiny production, light on its feet and aromatic in rose petal and violet. With notes of black cherry and pomegranate its tannins are silky and the wine deliciously priced.
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Bravium

Bravium

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Bravium, Mendocino Ridge, Mendocino, California
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Bravium translates from Latin as "reward, prize, or gift." Derek Rohlffs - Bravium’s Proprietor & Winemaker - founded the winery in 2007. Derek always had a mysterious pull to nature. To hear him tell it, the vineyard is his destiny. Derek does not view his path to winemaking as a conscious choice, but more of an undercurrent that quietly ushered him to where he belongs. 

Today, Derek welcomes the sight of hawks circling over the vineyards and swooping down to the earth around him. A single hawk’s feather fittingly graces the Bravium label, echoing the power, elegance, and vitality of the wines- and of Derek’s Cherokee roots. According to Derek, “A great wine will draw you into the people, the place, and the story behind it.”

Bravium produces single vineyard, traditionally-crafted Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grown in hillside and mountaintop vineyards. Bravium’s vineyards are located in the relatively cool growing regions of Anderson Valley, Russian River Valley, Carneros, Mendocino Ridge and Santa Lucia Highlands. Derek employs simple winemaking techniques - gravity-moving wines and bottling his red wines unfined and unfiltered - allowing the vineyards and vintages to remain at the forefront. "The longer I make wine, the more I subscribe to a 'less is more' approach," Derek has said. Critics are growing increasingly excited about Bravium's wines, placing it alongside benchmark "producers such as Rhys, Kalin Cellars, Porter Creek, Joseph Swan, Copain and Littorai," while calling out its "deft integration of oak, judicious use of whole cluster fermentation, pleasant aromatics, flavor without weight, and bright acidity for refreshing drinking."

California

Red Wine

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A major force on the global playing field, California is the world’s fourth largest wine-producing region on the planet and the majority of land under vine here is devoted to red varieties—they cover nearly double the vineyard acreage compared to whites.

While the state’s incredibly diverse terrain and microclimates allow for countless red wine styles, the one factor unifying all California red wine is the abundance of sunshine and a long, consistent growing season, which leads to well-developed and fully ripened fruit.

The most famous region today, of course, is the acclaimed Napa Valley, where Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Bordeaux Blends garner global attention and in some cases, cult status.

Sonoma County, nestled between Napa Valley and the Pacific Ocean, claims great variability in geography and microclimates with vineyards climbing up mountains, reaching far into valleys and stretching along some the state’s most dramatic coastlines. Here world-class Pinot Noir is possible from Sonoma’s cooler sites while Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon do well in its warmer locations.

The Central Coast, Lodi and the Sierra Foothills also excel in the production of Zinfandel, and remain active new frontiers for Rhône and Spanish varieties.

Mendocino in California’s cool North Coast region is a fantastic source of Pinot noir.

Winemaking in California dates back to the 18th century when Spanish missionaries planted the first wine grapes. But the industry experienced its first boom with the Gold Rush in the last half of the 19th century when miners brought vines to the Sierra Foothills.

BRA138490_2011 Item# 138490