Birdhorse Wines, Arneis 2021, Mendocino, CA
This northern Italian grape is showcased here with bright notes of lilies, apricot, and honeyed beeswax. It’s concentrated and juicy, with a long, almond finish.
APPELLATION (AVA): Mendocino County
REGION: North Coast
VINEYARD: Spirit Canyon Vineyard
GRAPES: 100% Arneis
SOIL: Clay-loam soils
PRACTICE: Organic, sustainable
VINIFICATION: Native yeast fermentation, fermented in neutral puncheon and neutral oak for 14 weeks until dry. Malolactic fermentation was arrested, aged on lees for 9 months, racked and returned to barrel before bottling. pH: 3.40, TA: 5.9
COLOR: Pale straw
BODY: Light to medium
PRIMARY AROMAS: Lily of the Valley, apricot, pastry cream,
FLAVOR: Sage, honey, beeswax, almond, pear
FORMAT: 750 ml
SERVICE AND FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTION: Serve chilled. Serve with a big summer salad full of stone fruits, goat cheese, and honey vinaigrette.
ABOUT THE PRODUCER: "Birdhorse represents a vision for the future of California winemaking, a vision anchored in a passion for diversification. We strive to showcase regions, varietals, and humans that have long had a presence in this industry but have yet to been celebrated by many of its constituents. We are driven by intellectual curiosity, transparency, science, and data, but most importantly an ardor for delicious wines and sharing them with the wider drinking public." (birdhorsewines.com)
ABOUT THE WINEMAKERS: Corinne Rich and Katie Rouse
“Corinne was born and raised in Sonoma County, California, to parents that had zero ties to the wine industry other than being passionate consumers. She went on to earn her B.A. in Chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania and, after the world’s briefest stint in pharmaceutical research, she returned to her native northern California and dove head-first into wine production. She spent time working the harvest circuit across a variety of regions, including Sonoma, Willamette Valley, New Zealand, and Australia before returning to school for her M.S. in Viticulture & Enology from UC Davis. There she met Katie Rouse and, well, the rest is history! The two worked a harvest in South Africa, got a wallop of inspiration, and returned home to start Birdhorse. When she’s not elbows-deep in a Birdhorse ferment, Corinne has a day job as the assistant winemaker at Scribe Winery in Sonoma.
“Katie did her undergrad at Whitman College, where her rampant enthusiasm for all things rock-related earned her a B.A. in Geology. Born of the grapes into a winemaking family in Rockbridge County, Virginia, Katie naturally gravitated back to winemaking while living in Sonoma, California where she was working in the the Napa/Sonoma Carneros for years. Whilst nerding out and earning her M.S. in Viticulture & Enology from UC Davis, she fell head-over-heels for Corinne, and is now thrilled to have found a partner in, well...everything! After working in South Africa, Burgundy, and most recently St. Helena, CA, Katie is the assistant winemaker at Bedrock Wine Co in Sonoma.” (birdhorsewines.com)
ABOUT THE VINEYARD: Spirit Canyon Vineyard
“Glenn McGourty, a UC farm advisor for over 30 years, planted this parcel of the Spirit Canyon Vineyards to two clones of the Piemontese white variety Arneis in 1994. Uncultivated since inception on the loamy banks of the Russian River, Glenn continues to sustainably and lovingly farm it with his trusty pup Siaoban. As a nod to its Northern Italian origins, our Arneis undergoes fermentation in a neutral, 500L puncheon and remained on lees until just before bottling.” (birdhorsewines.com)
ABOUT ARNEIS: Arneis is a grape from Piedmont in Northern Italy that nearly went extinct in the 1970s. Luckily, a few dedicated wineries kept it alive, and today it . Arneis is aromatic, with notes of pear, apricot, white flowers, and almond. It is usually made dry, and can be similar to Pinot Gris.