2016 Pinot Noir, Radian Vineyard
Radian is one of the most dramatic, remote and extreme sites in Santa Barbara County. It is located at the far western edge of the Sta. Rita Hills appellation, high atop the sparse, chaparral and poison oak studded Santa Rosa Hills, and it literally wraps itself around crevasses and steep cliffs, its tiny roads literally clinging to hillsides in some spots. From here one has a direct sightline to the huge expanse of the mighty Pacific Ocean, whose influence completely dominates the site, from the cold powerful winds, to the high proportion of prehistoric algae skeletons (the silica based diatomaceous earth) comprising the soils. This vineyard actually seems to rest, somewhat precariously, upon this remarkably hardscrabble land. We identified this site at its inception and chose the most extreme blocks, which yield a tiny crop of small clusters. The resulting wines are intense, with a fascinating mineral streak and a remarkable depth of flavor even at lower alcohol levels. We have received several outstanding reviews on the wines from this site. 2016 was an excellent vintage at Radian, with healthy vines producing a small crop of fabulous grapes. The wine was aged on its lees for 18 months in French oak barrels (25% new). The wine has great complexity and depth of flavor balanced by terrific energy and mineral notes. Very Limited, only 490 cases produced.