This is my first post since my return to Hahn and it comes with lots of memories from my previous experience here at the estate. It’s the middle of the week and the aromas of fermentation in the cellar bring me back to 2003, working side by side with the cellar team. The energy, passion and dedication to create premium and luxury wines from the Santa Lucia Highland are still intact. That energy and passion encourage me even more to continue the Hahn tradition.

With Mother Nature in charge, she decided to make it a very fast paced harvest pushing Pinot Noir blocks to be ready for harvest faster than anticipated.

Harvesting Pinot Noir (Calera clone) 9-2-14

All of us are hitting the vineyards daily to determine and prioritize what to bring to the winery. This week we have decided to harvest some of our best Pinot Noir blocks coming from Smith, Hook and Doctor’s as well some of our Pinot Noir from Ste. Philippe and Ste. Nicolas.

The cellar team is working long days in two shifts starting from 4:00 AM and going until the grapes are nice and safe in a stainless-steel tank ready for fermentation (sometimes going until 3:00 AM). All our 3 ton open top fermenters are full of premium Pinot Noir grapes from Doctor’s vineyard, specifically clones 667, Swan and 113. For these wines we do punch downs 3 to 4 times a day for a very gentle and friendly extraction. The wines are evolving very nicely with an elegant structure and color that makes me excited about the future. Our Noir Blanc fermentation is complete! This is a very bright wine with a crisp refreshing structure. Now it is sleeping in a stainless-steel vessel until it is ready to please consumers.

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So far, we have received over 440 tons of premium grapes but we still have more to come. The vineyard, production and winemaking teams have the energy, passion, knowledge and dedication to create the best wines from the Santa Lucia Highlands.

Tony Baldini said something that I always keep in mind. “Today we are working on our future,” quality is here and it will not go away.

Until the next one,

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Juan Jose Verdina