Three Sticks Price Family Estates Pinot Noir 2017
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
This youthful wine is from several properties owned by the producer, including the Walala, Gap’s Crown, Durell and One Sky Vineyards. Earth, clove and tree bark tones provide a savory edge of complexity, followed by focused elements of baking spice, orange, pomegranate and strawberry. Structured yet bright, it is cohesive and delicious.
Coming from a site on the Sonoma Coast, the 2017 Pinot Noir Price Family Estates sports a medium ruby, moderately translucent color as well as a spice, black cherry, incense, and dried underbrush-driven profile. Textured, medium-bodied, and seamless on the palate, it's beautifully balanced and a smoking little wine.
Bob Cabral makes this wine in a project with Bill Price, selecting the fruit from four of Price’s vineyards. Most of it comes from the 17 acres at Walala, a vineyard in the redwood forests at the northwestern reaches of Sonoma County; the balance comes from Gap’s Crown, Durell and One Sky. It has the freshness of cool red cherries and the savor of roast meats, the tannins ripe and integrated while still lending shape to the wine.
Three Sticks Wines is a boutique, family-owned winery led by veteran winemaker Bob Cabral. Cabral's commitment to crafting small-lot, artisanal wines from exceptional Sonoma Coast vineyards, including Durell Vineyard, Gap's Crown Vineyard and Walala Vineyard, drives the winery's focus of creating site specific wines. Founded in 2002, the winery is named for owner William S. Price III's surfing nickname, "Billy Three Sticks," assigned to him in his youth as reference to the Roman numeral that follows his name. Three Sticks has a down to earth approach to growing and winemaking, they believe in table fellowship as the power of wine to bring people together.
Bill and Eva Price are lovers of Sonoma’s grapes and rich history. The Vallejo-Castenada Adobe (built in 1842) was built by Captain Salvador Vallejo, brother of General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, the Commandante Generale of the northern territory of Mexico (modern day Sonoma). The Prices purchased the property in 2012 and embarked on a two-year preservation project. The Three Sticks team worked with Sonoma historians and the Sonoma League for Historic Preservation to restore and protect the fabric of the property. They commissioned San Francisco-based designer Ken Fulk and his team to design the ambience of the Adobe, as it is known locally. The historic landmark in downtown Sonoma is now home to the hospitality of Three Sticks.
A vast appellation covering Sonoma County’s Pacific coastline, the Sonoma Coast AVA runs all the way from the Mendocino County border, south to the San Pablo Bay. The region can actually be divided into two sections—the actual coastal vineyards, marked by marine soils, cool temperatures and saline ocean breezes—and the warmer, drier vineyards further inland, which are still heavily influenced by the Pacific but not quite with same intensity.
Contained within the appellation are the much smaller Fort Ross-Seaview and Petaluma Gap AVAs.
Thin-skinned, finicky and temperamental, Pinot Noir is also one of the most rewarding grapes to grow and remains a labor of love for some of the greatest vignerons in Burgundy. Fairly adaptable but highly reflective of the environment in which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate and requires low yields to achieve high quality. Outside of France, outstanding examples come from in Oregon, California and throughout specific locations in wine-producing world. Somm Secret—André Tchelistcheff, California’s most influential post-Prohibition winemaker decidedly stayed away from the grape, claiming “God made Cabernet. The Devil made Pinot Noir.”