I should be shot for taking this long to review one of Kenny’s wines, as I have been a big fan since I first tasted, and many in our local wine tasting circle agree.
Kenny’s approach to wine making is generally minimal intervention, often using native yeast and secondary fermentation, at modest brix levels, allowing the varietal and vintage to express itself. You may know his wines through his other labels as well, including Hobo and Ghost Writer.
The wine I’d also like to make wine of the week is a brilliant ‘orange’ wine (barely orange really). The 2009 Jeanne D’Arc is 87% Chenin Blanc and 13% Riesling. Fermented 100% on the skins with natural yeast and left on the skins for 2 weeks. One of the more complex, modest priced wines I tasted last year, but it’s down to less a case, and may not have as wide and audience, although everyone I know exposed to it has raved.
Many of Kenny’s releases are very small lots, and he sells a fair amount through regional distribution so access to a release can sometimes be short lived. Hobo and Folk Machine wines are available in Healdsburg at the Downtown Wine tasting room.
In the release notes Kenny says of Potter Valley “Because Potter Valley may not need an introduction by the time this wine is released I will leave it in short by saying it is one of those places that seems like it should be more traveled, more explored, and more appreciated, but I am grateful that there is no traffic and few people when I visit (though more and more vineyards).”
Folk Machine 2009 The Crooner – Potter Valley Pinot Noir
Color: Medium Red, Mostly clear
In the Mouth: Wonderful. Strawberry, red fruit, Rhubarb. Very modest tannins, enough for structure and balance, elegant. Not fruit forward or a cherry bomb, or masquerading as Syrah. A Pinot lovers Pinot, and at a price that won’t break the bank. Good acidity, velvet mouth feel, nice lingering finish. Modest 13.5% alcohol.
This is an amazing Pinot for price. Retail $28.
Get it locally at Downtown Wine (their tasting room) in Healdsburg. (Tell em you read it here, Aaron may give ya a special pour. Or order online. Hobo/Folk Machine wines are also distributed – check out these locations across the country.
Rating: Outstanding. 90 points.
Recommendation: Buy and drink or hold.
Wine Geek Info:
- Harvested 50% Pommard and 50% 115 the morning of September 19.
- Destemmed 85% of the two clones together leaving 15% whole clusters and the work in a way ended there.
- No cold soak, inoculate, or additions.
- When the fermentation began, it began and progressed slowly taking 10 days without temperature control to ferment.
- The malolactic fermentation, also uninoculated proceeded at a similarly slow pace and completed in January.
- SO2 was avoided until bottling to “keep the wine alive.”
- Aged in French oak, 30% new from the Bertrange and Allier forests for 11 months on the lees. The Vecino Vineyard is certified organic by CCOF.
- only 10 barrels (250 cases using Sonoma math) made.