Anthill Farms, Bedrock & Carlisle

At The Wine House we are privileged to carry wine from some of California’s finest, most beloved wineries, many whom have long ago closed their mailing lists to the public and leave throngs of fans wondering where can they find their wines. Looking for Anthill Farms’ single-vineyard elegant Pinot Noirs from the cool climates of California’s North Coast? What about the small-lot, eclectic bottlings from Bedrock’s winemaker Morgan Twain-Peterson (from here on out we’ll refer to him as MTP)? And what about California’s heirloom vineyard preservationist Mike Officer from Carlisle, whose wines critic Robert Parker has called “artisanal, world-class reds that remain among California’s most fairly priced high quality wines”? Look no further, we have a selection of them newly arrived, though as you can imagine, all are available in tiny quantities. If you discover something has sold out before you had a chance to place your order, please shoot us an email with your request, as we have been known to beg and plead for more wine from our friends, and sometimes, more wine does shake loose, though we can’t make any promises it will happen this time. —Anya Balistreri

Anthill Farms
Anthill Farms’ Pinot Noirs are unabashedly elegant and balanced. Though texturally rich and delightfully perfumed, Anthill Farms’ reputation is built on making wines that allow the vineyard site, and hence the fruit, to stand center stage. I was impressed by the liveliness and tightly wound structure of the 2010s. These wines are oh so pretty!
2010 Anthill Farms Pinot Noir Tina Marie Vineyard Russian River Valley
Red Wine; Pinot Noir; Sonoma;
$49.98
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“This site lies in the heart of the Green Valley appellation, on the corner of Green Valley and Maddocks Roads. Owner and manager Ron Black had the foresight to plant his hillside very densely to create intense vine competition and low yields. This approach delivers an intoxicating combination of lushness and poise to the wines from this site. Our section of the vineyard yielded two tons per acre in 2010. The nose is rich in exotic kirsch, violets, warm earth, and carnation. The wine’s texture is lush and deep but very well-delineated by balanced acids. While charming now and perhaps our most accessible wine early on, the wine’s focused length and chewy tannins will allow for years of aging.”
2010 Anthill Farms Pinot Noir Campbell Ranch Vineyard Sonoma Coast
Red Wine; Pinot Noir; Sonoma;
$49.98
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“The vineyard is located a few miles from the Pacific Ocean, near the tiny town of Annapolis, and is farmed by Steve Campbell and ourselves. At approximately 750 feet above sea level, it sits at the boundary of the marine layer, allowing the cool, coastal conditions to delay ripening well beyond warmer vineyards to the east. The twelve-year-old vines grow on sandy, low-vigor Goldridge soil, which helps reduce yields to less than two tons per acre. The wine exhibits exotically fragrant aromas of cherry liqueur, jasmine, and green tea, with subtle fresh mushroom scents as the wine opens. The velvety mouthfeel and intense midpalate flavors complement and highlight its nose. Juicy acids and subtle tannins rein in the gentle sweetness of the fruit and add structure to the wine, lifting and lengthening the floral, spicy finish. It is delicious early, but best over the next 3-6 years or more.”
Bedrock
My admiration for Bedrock wines has been well documented. From my first taste of MTP’s debut vintage, I knew I was going to be following this winery very closely. I tasted that something special that is impossible to quantify, but know it when I taste it. Indeed Bedrock is now easily recognized in the wine world as the producer to watch. The cat is out of the bag, so to speak. Fortunately we saw Bedrock’s potential early on and as such are thankfully allocated a bit of wine with each release. I recently took home the “Ode to Lulu” Rose and I must say this was the first time I tasted a domestic rose that was void of any candied fruit flavors. This rose has layers to it with a fresh dry finish.
2011 Bedrock Wine Company Ode to Lulu Rose of Mourvedre Sonoma Valley
Rose; Mourvedre; Sonoma;
$19.98
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“In the ongoing quest to craft the perfect rosé there are some revisions to the 2011 Ode to Lulu. Rather than being completely composed of whole-cluster pressed Mourvedre from Bedrock planted in 1888, this vintage the wine also contains 31% whole-cluster pressed Mourvedre from Pagani Ranch planted in 1921 and 9% younger-vine Grenache treated the same way from Annadel Vineyard. All the lots were picked between 19.6 and 21.2 brix. They were vinified separately using native yeasts and then blended back together. This is easily the most delicate version of this wine yet. It is a beautiful light copper-pink and weighs in at 12.3% alcohol. This will pair nicely with a wide range of Spring and Summer fare or simply on its own. God, I love rosé!” MTP
2011 Bedrock Wine Company Casa Santinamaria White Wine Sonoma Valley
White Wine; White Blend; Sonoma;
$21.48
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“The first vintage from these venerable vines planted in 1905. Like the Compagni Portis this is a old-field blended white vineyard but the varieties present are completely different. This is composed of Muscadelle, Chasselas, Zinfandel, Semillon, and even a little bit of Chardonnay. I picked everything together (including the red Zinfandel) and whole-cluster pressed it into a mix of old French oak barrels and stainless steel barrels. The wine fermented with native yeasts and ML was inhibited. The resulting wine is certainly unique! Though not as effusively aromatic as the Compagni Portis it possesses uncanny density and lift for a wine that did not see either malolactic or new oak. To be honest is reminds me most of a Marsanne/Roussanne blend. Eight barrels made.”MTP
2011 Bedrock Wine Company Sauvignon Blanc Kick Ranch Sonoma County
White Wine; Sauvignon Blanc; Sonoma;
$21.48
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“As usual the steep and rocky hillsides of Kick Ranch yielded a small crop of flavorful Sauvignon Blanc. I picked about a week before anyone else knowing the barrel fermentation and lees stirring were going to add plenty of richness to the final wine. Always fiddling/attempting to perfect I changed up the vinification a little bit. Much of the Sauvignon Musque went down to used barrels along with 12% new Acacia wood. The remainder was fermented in a 600 gallon oak foudre to enhance lees contact without as much stirring. I am very pleased with the resulting wine- perfumey and high-tone but possessing a lifted but broad center. 450 cases made.”MTP
Carlisle
Like Bedrock and Anthill Farms, The Wine House has been fans of Carlisle wines from their start. Carlisle wines never stay on the shelf for long, so know you’ve been warned! In recent years, winemaker Mike Officer has taken an active role in the preservation of heirloom vineyards with the formation of a non-profit organization called the Historic Wine Society..
2010 Carlisle Winery Syrah Papa’s Block Russian River Valley
Red Wine; Syrah/Shiraz; Sonoma;
$44.98
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“Regrettably, we did not bottle a Papa’s Block Syrah in 2009. The fruit did not hold up well after the deluge of October 13th and what little we received (all 1.2 tons) went into our ’09 Sonoma County Syrah. Needless to say we were highly disappointed, especially after having the 2007 land on the cover of the Wine Spectator. Fortunately though, the vineyard bounced back magnificently in 2010. Picked October 20th, two-thirds of the fruit was destemmed while the rest was left as whole clusters. Fermentation was indigenous. All French oak, 26% new. Bottled unfined and unfiltered. Tasting Note: Very dark purple garnet. Verging on opaque. A fabulous sniff of blackberry compote, black and green pepper, and spring flowers. An intriguing element of green olive lurks in the background, most likely from the whole cluster inclusion. On the palate, pure silk with an explosion of blackberry fruit. So delicious now that we see no reason to wait. Dive right in! The water’s fine!” Mike Officer, winemaker.
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Filed under Anya Balistreri, Sonoma County

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