A Legendary Vineyard: Source of Chardonnay That Helped Win Judgment of Paris is Still Thriving
The two Napa Valley wineries were Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars and Chateau Montelena. Stag’s Leap took top place in the red wine tasting with their 1973 Cabernet Sauvignon that was made from grapes in their Stag’s Leap Vineyard. Chateau Montelena, which achieved the top white wine award, beating out wines from Puligny-Montrachet, Mersault Charmes and Batard-Montrachet, purchased 85% of its grapes from Sonoma County. Of these, large percentages were from the Bacigalupi Vineyard in the Russian River AVA. Planted in 1964, the nearly 50 year old vines stand 8 feet tall on huge shaggy trunks and still produce an impressive 1 to 2 tons of grapes a year.
How Bacigalupi Chardonnay Grapes Arrived in Paris
“We call it the Paris Tasting Block,” says 87 year old Helen Bacigalupi, co-owner with her husband Charles, of more than 90 acres of Russian River grapes in Sonoma County. “We still have the original 4 acres of chardonnay that Mike Grgich, the winemaker, selected to go into the 1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay, but it is producing less and less, and some of the vines have died.”
To read the full article visit: http://www.winebusiness.com/news/?go=getArticle&dataid=117399
2013 has started off as a very exciting and blessed year for our family. On February 1st at 11:36 a.m. we welcomed the 4th generation, Stella Marie Dericco. Born happy and healthy at exactly 7lbs and 19 inches both baby and mom, Nicole are doing well. Our family would like to extend a very heartfelt thank you for all your well wishes and congratulations on our newest addition!
The 2009 harvest was a notable year especially for Russian River Pinot Noir. Cool and mild weather caused slowing in maturity which leads to a wonderful and complex flavor profile. Our 2009 exhibits a dark garnet color. On the nose, a bouquet of fresh strawberries, currants and a hint of sandalwood. This wine has a full, opulent, yet robust mid palate and finishes with lush fruit essences and a subtle spice of clove.
Crop yields rebounded from the previous year as there was minimal frost damage in April. The summer was cool, extending the growing season right into verasion. Acidity levels were slightly higher than normal but with mostly moderate temperatures we were still able to achieve physiologically mature fruit. Rain and thunderstorms did make a small appearance this year in the middle of harvest but we were able to get the Pinot Noir fruit off the vines quickly with no issues.
Vineyard Location- Bacigalupi Vineyards, Russian River Valley Appellation.
Climate- Cool mornings and warm afternoons
Soil- Rocky volcanic and sandy loam
Date: Sunrise; September 6th, 2009
Lot: 10 tons
Wente and Pommard Clone
Cases produced: 825 cases
3 tons fermented whole cluster, 7 tons crushed. 7-day cold soak, inoculated for malolactic.
Private Vertical Tasting and Vineyard Tour Experience Our vertical tasting experience begins with a short historical vineyard tour through some of our oldest Chardonnay plantings on the estate from 1964. This tour, hosted by one of the Bacigalupi family members, will give you a glimpse back in history documenting 55 years of premium grape growing in the Russian River Valley. After the tour, relish in a private vertical tasting on our outdoor patio with an offering of six wines, available only through the tasting room. Enjoy a selection of cheeses thoughtfully paired by the cheese experts at Big John’s market in Healdsburg. By appointment only Friday- Sunday. Seatings begin at 11:00, 12:30, 2:00 and 3:30. Maximum of 8 guest seatings available. $30 per person. Club members enjoy two for one pricing, one per membership. Contact To schedule a visit please contact our tasting room at 707-473-0115 or by email at email@example.com. Cancellation Policy Credit card number is required to hold the reservation. 24 hour cancellation policy.
Wine Country Chili with all the Fixin’s
Chili tends to be a fall staple in our home, and for good reason. It’s quick to make and is a wonderful companion for red wine. This particular recipe pairs fantastic with our new release, the 2008 Zinfandel. So whip up a batch, light a fire, pour yourself a glass and enjoy!
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 medium onions chopped
4 garlic cloves minced
3 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 pound beef chuck
1 pound Italian sausage (can use spicy option)
2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more as needed
2 cans (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes with juice
1 can (15 ounces) kidney beans, drained
1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 ounces) BBQ baked beans, drained
1 tablespoon minced canned chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until tender 7 to 10 minutes. Add the chili powder, paprika, cumin and Italian seasoning, stir until well combined. Add the ground chuck, sausage and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Increase heat slightly and cook the meat, stirring until brown, about 8-10 minutes. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour. Adjust the seasoning as needed with more salt or chilies if necessary. Serve with your favorite fixin’s.
Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Chopped Green Onions
Crumbled Corn Chip
In farming they say “feast or famine” and with this year’s harvest there is no shortage of celebration in the Russian River Valley with a fantastic vintage now resting peacefully in the cellar. After a pair of unusually cool seasons in 2010 and 2011, vintages which resulted in lower than average yields and lower than average ripeness levels, 2012 looks bountiful, with good-sized yields and excellent fruit quality. After a relatively dry winter, bud break in the valley was earlier than normal, but berry set was quite good. The summer progressed with mild temperatures which led to extraordinary hang time, and as a result, excellent flavor development. A few extra heat pushes in late September ripened our Zinfandel and Petite Sirah with a final convergence of high quality and yields. Here at the end of October we are hopefully looking at a year that will rival other highly acclaimed vintages in the Russian River Valley such as 2007 and 2009.
Read our entire Fall 2012 newsletter here
Recently the Prince of Pinot Noir Rusty Gaffney stopped by our tasting room for an extensive interview with John and Pam Bacigalupi. During his visit he also tasted through our entire line up of Pinot Noir’s. With a love affair of Pinot Noir for over 40 years Rusty is the first to write a wine publication devoted entirely to one varietal.
Rusty’s indepth article on John Tyler Wines by Bacigalupi Vineyards: Ageworthy Wines with Pedigree can be read here.
His interview with John and Pam can be hear here.
Lighten up your family’s dinner table with a fun twist on the traditional salad.
1 head of romaine lettuce washed and pat dry
2 green onions, sliced
3 celery stalks, sliced
1/4 lb shrimp (if using frozen try to find ones with no salt added)
1 cup dried Chinese noodles
1 package frozen petite peas
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
4 shakes of red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon ketchup
Mix all dressing ingredients together in a small bowl. Toss remaining salad ingredients in a large bowl, adding 1 package of frozen peas to keep salad fresh. Lastly top with Chinese noodles for a fun crunch!
Pairs with 2008 Pinot Noir
Tyler Heck is Russian River Valley’s “Character from the ground up” in Wine Spectator’s July issue. RRV is its own character due to its unique combination of artisan wine with great character made by people with unique characters. Growing up Tyler played the saxophone and guitar as well as today making some of the finest Pinot Noir and Zinfandel in the valley. The eclectic nature of the people who grow the grapes and make the wine truly sets this region apart from the others. See the ad Wine Spectator July 2011
Check out the newest publication of Wine Country this Week, ”Preferred Sonoma Wine Country Day Trips off Highway 101“. John Tyler Wines is featured as a recommended day trip to take if you are traveling down Westside Road. Westside Road is, quite literally, one of the most recommended routes to take for wine tasting in this Russian River Valley AVA. Westside Road is slow and winding, filled with redwood trees, heritage oaks with moss beards and famous vineyards. Should you wish to slow down and experience wine country up-close-and-personal, Westside Road is your road. Open by appointment, please call 707-473-0123 to schedule a tasting with us. Click here to read full article.