Byron Pinot Noir
For more than two decades, Byron has been an avid proponent of sustainable farming methods. They were environmentally friendly long before it was trendy. They have developed programs that have kept the land healthy and led to the production of higher quality, more authentic and site-specific wines.
While most of our vineyards (90+%) are farmed using sustainable or organic techniques, they still have blocks of old vines that were planted long before disease free vines and rootstocks were available and modern vineyard protocols had been established. While they could remove these original vines dating back to 1964, l they add a degree of character, complexity, history and perspective to Byron and the wines that can never be replaced.
Beneficial insects are released when possible to help control harmful pest populations and limit
The amount of pesticides that may need to be used.
Cover crops are planted and managed to provide a sustainable environment for beneficial pests.
When possible, organic selective chemicals are used to control only the harmful pests
The vineyard team has the knowledge of life cycles of pests and diseases to better determine
when a spray is necessary.
Canopies are managed through trellising, leaf pulling and shoot positioning to allow light
penetration, air movement, and spray penetration to combat pest and disease pressure.
Owl and raptor houses are built throughout the vineyard to facilitate bio-control of rodents.
Pre-dawn handpicking while grapes are at their coolest to retain fruit vibrancy.
Sorting in vineyard and again at stemmer crusher to ensure only clean, ripe berries.
Destemming only with a 5% whole cluster inclusion in some lots for complexity, aromatics and chalky tannins.
Cold soaking for four or five days to extract additional flavor and color from skins.
Employing rack and return when sugar is present to create better cap management leading to more complexity and concentration.
Aging exclusively in French oak barrels.
Earlier bottling of Santa Maria Pinot Noir (10 months in oak) to preserve freshness.
The 2011 vintage included a very warm and dry winter and spring. These conditions led to being fruitful with small clusters and small berries with flavors of dark berry, cherry, hints of floral and mineral. This is a forward approachable wine that displays the beautiful floral/mineral character typical of Santa