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Vineyard Evolution

DeLoach Vineyards develop a French Accent.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Not often do I actually write this “Sip” column in wine country—Sonoma County. But today I am. The vineyard scene could be mistaken for Burgundy, France. But instead I am in DeLoach Vineyards, surrounded by grapevines hanging heavy with—soon to be harvested—2010 fruit. It is a vintage that is eagerly awaited, as it represents an evolution of DeLoach wines.

In 2003, DeLoach Vineyards was purchased by the Boisset Family from Burgundy, France, when Jean-Charles Boisset saw that Sonoma County’s river, mountains, and soil was similar to Burgundy. The Boisset Family brought their knowledge and experience with biodynamic, organic, and sustainable winemaking to DeLoach in 2004. Converting DeLoach Vineyards to organic and biodynamic methods, they removed the estate’s vineyards and replanted with cover crops, over a two-year period, to revitalize the soil. New vines were planted in 2006. The winery has since been awarded organic certification by the CCOF (California Certified Organic Farmers). And the first vintage grown with biodynamic farming techniques is the eagerly awaited 2010 vintage.

Several DeLoach wines from the Russian River Valley are currently available in the Birmingham market. O.F.S (Our Finest Selection) Pinot Noir 2008 ($40) is ruby in color, medium in body with a lovely acidity and notes of blackberry and raspberry with subtleties of mocha, leather and black tea. O.F.S Chardonnay 2008 ($30) is medium-plus in body, with a zesty acidity, and offers notes of apple, pear, honey, citrus, vanilla, and butter. And Russian River Valley Zinfandel 2008 ($20) is medium in body and ink in color with aromas of raspberry, cherry, boysenberry and cranberry accented by a touch of spice.

Published, B-Metro, October 2010

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