I was excited to see this pinot noir come across my desk – not only have Three Sticks Wines been consistently delicious, but Gap’s Crown is one of my favorite vineyards and I’m always excited to see what folks are doing with this cool and windy fruit on Sonoma Mountain.

The original Adobe dining room is now a tasting room. (Courtesy of Three Sticks Wines)

Three Sticks Wines – Small Craft + History

Founded in 2002, Three Sticks Wines is a small, family-owned boutique winery based in Sonoma, California, creating small lot, site specific handcrafted wines, from highly coveted Sonoma County vineyards.

The founder William Price III, named the winey after the roman numeral that follows his name – it was also his nickname when a young surfer: “Billy Three Sticks.”

In 2012, Price, and his wife Eva, purchased one of the oldest buildings in California: the Vallejo-Castenada Adobe, which was built in 1842. It is one of the oldest consecutively occupied buildings in the state.

The Adobe, as we locals call it, was built by Captain Salvador Vallejo, brother of General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, the Comandante of the northern territory of Mexico. The building is a listed California Historic Landmark.

Upon purchasing the building, the Price’s started a two year preservation project, during which they worked with local preservationists and historians to restore and protect the property. Today, the Adobe has a historical and modern feel, with contemporary furnishings, art that harkens back to the 19th century, and archaeological objects found on the property during the preservation process.

The winemaker is Bob Cabral, who put iconic pinot noir producer Williams Selyem on the map with his skills.

Gap’s Crown Vineyard (Courtesy of Three Sticks Wines)

The Vineyard

One of the most coveted pinot noir producing vineyards in the US, Gap’s Crown is located on the western side of Sonoma Mountain, overlooking the city of Petaluma. It’s at an elevation of 300′ to 800′. Soil wise, it’s loam and clay loam, making it well-drained and primed for pinot noir.

Located in the newly crowned Petaluma Gap AVA, the vineyard enjoys cool coastal winds and fog in the evening and early mornings and warm, sunny exposure during the day.

Pinot noir grapes comprise clones – different types of grapes developed for different texture, sizes, flavor and aroma. The grapes grown here include Swan, 828, 115, and a touch of Rochioli, a Pommard clone. (I’ll talk about clones another time!)

Check out a video about Gap’s Crown Vineyard here.

The Wine

This pinot noir is a young and tasty gem.

The aroma is lush with black cherry, cola, and a touch of rose petals. The taste complements the aroma, with the black cherries turning into cherry pie, thanks to the grapes spending 15 months in 55% new French Oak barrels. There are also tastes of baking spices and blackberry. It’s lush and silky.

If you’re a fan of California’s Russian River Vineyard pinot noirs and/or red wines that are medium bodied, ruby red, and fruit forward you’ll enjoy this wine.

I’d age this wine another year (up to 6 more years) to bring out a bit more tannins (the dryness you get on your tongue) to help tone down the fruit forward nature of the wine.

It would pair perfectly with duck, chicken teriyaki, or a bolognese pasta.

Take action

Three Sticks Wines 2015 Gap’s Crown Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir retails for $70 is available directly from the winery. Learn more about the wine here.

This post was first published on Steemit in Jan 2018.