L'Ecole No 41 2014 Apogee Pepper Bridge Vineyard

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WINEMAKER COMMENT

L’Ecole No 41 has been producing Pepper Bridge Vineyard Apogee since 1993. Apogee represents our best effort to capture this vineyard’s distinctive and characteristic spicy bold aromas, dark fruit flavors, robust tannins and rich structure.

PEPPER BRIDGE VINEYARD

This vineyard, planted in the terraced remnants of ice age flood deposits, is one of the Walla Walla Valley’s most reputable vineyards. Apogee was the first wine produced from this Certified Sustainable and Certified Salmon Safe vineyard.

VINTAGE

  • The 2014 vintage was a repeat of the warm 2013 vintage with heat units nearly identical, and no unusual winter frost, pest, or disease pressure.
  • Bud break was early, followed by a warm spring and relatively early bloom. Fruit set was near ideal. Slowing tactics were implemented such as delayed thinning and leafing to delay veraison and ultimately harvest.
  • Temperatures cooled mid-August stretching out the hang-time to complete veraison. Berry size and berry count per cluster were slightly up resulting in healthy crop yields.
  • Modest fall day-time temperatures and cool nights resulted in a rich and vibrant structure with bold color development. Overall warmer conditions delivered ample sugars and surprisingly strong acids, particularly in our higher elevation sites.

WINEMAKING

  • Over 30 years of meticulous vineyard management and winemaking experience are fundamental to the quality of our wines and reputation for excellence. We are engaged in growing and making 100% of our wines.
  • Each lot was hand harvested ripe and gently crushed into 1.5 ton stainless steel fermenters.
  • Gentle handling of the fruit through hand punch downs and gravity assisted movements were utilized throughout the entire winemaking process.
  • The wine was cleanly racked to 100% small French oak barrels, 50% new, with five rackings over 22 months.
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