Arista Winery

California: Russian River Valley, United States

Pinot Noir, Toboni Vineyard, Russian River Valley – 2015

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  • Introduction

    • Vintage Notes

      The Toboni Vineyard is located just off the famed Olivet Lane in the heart of the Russian River Valley. The 15-acre vineyard is divided into multiple blocks which are planted to Dijon 115, 667, and 777, as well as Pommard clone 5. The various clonal blocks match the various slope aspects in the vineyard in an effort to maximize the vines ability to ripen in the cool, foggy conditions. Meticulous attention is given to each block throughout the growing season to allow the inherent, sight specific qualities of this vineyard to shine in the finished wine. Mary and Joe Toboni are 4th generation San Franciscans whose roots can be traced back to San Francisco as early as the 1870’s and specifically to Sonoma County prior to the 1920’s.


      Cold grapes arrive at the winery early in the morning after having been picked at night. The clusters are sorted by hand and then destemmed into small, open-top fermenters. The juice is allowed to warm gradually and naturally in the fermenter. Given that all of the wines are made with native yeasts and are not inoculated, this cold-soak period can vary between 5-8 days depending on how long it takes these native populations to build up and begin fermentation. Pinot Noir fermentations are kept below 85 degrees. The wines always go through malolactic fermentation. The wines then spend the next 11 months in barrel, and the wine is racked clean just prior to bottling.

      Technical Information

      Vine Age: 20 years
      Soil: Gravel and Clay Loam
      Clonal Composition: Dijon 115, 667, and 777; Pommard clone 5
      Aging: 11 months in barrel (70% Francois Frères, 15% Sirugue, 15% Chassin—
      40% new oak)
      Alcohol: 14.5
      Unfined, unfiltered

  • Tasting Notes

    • The nose is full of sweet spice, cola and raspberry aromas. Notes of cocoa powder, bacon, fresh raspberries and fig come in waves as this layered and concentrated wine opens up in the glass. More complex aromas of raspberry coulis, turned earth, grilled pancetta, graham cracker and violets begin to develop with exposure to air. The finish is long and persistent with mouth-watering acidity providing structure, freshness and lift.