The 2009 Vintage
The 2009 vintage was remarkable for the coolness and evenness of the weather throughout the growing season. This enabled remarkable phenolic and physiological ripeness at moderate sugar ripeness.
These qualities make the 2009 vintage a sister to 2007, with also saw mostly cool weather save a few days of heat. Unlike 2007, however, the harvest in 2009 was completed in a mere two and a half weeks as the cooling came at the end instead of the middle as in 2007.
The winter weather was moderate with average rainfall. The moderate temperatures continued all year with a few hot days sprinkled in. Bud break came in mid-March. Rain continued later than usual in 2009, with a final soaking of 7.8 (!!) inches from May 1- May 6. This resulted in highly saturated soils and consequently increased vigor in the vines. We spent much of the growing season attempting to tame this vigor through intense canopy management. The flowers opened mid-May and the crop was fully set by the end of June. The set was good as the winds were fair and the later rains light.
August was the month of veraison. It was mostly cool with only four hot days at month’s end, and they brought the vines and fruit to maturity. Picking began on August 31 and the winery had all its fruit in tank by Sept 13, a remarkably short span for our site. The fruit chemistry was excellent and every lot was finished and in barrel by October 1.
THE 2009 WINES
In 2009 we produced the following wines at Hirsch Vineyards:
The 2009 vintage blessed us with ideal conditions for producing a chardonnay of balance, finesse and site-specificity. We picked early to ensure fruit flavors and aromatics that emphasize white flower, citrus and stone fruit. The new oak percentage is low, at 18%, and we did not stir the lees or otherwise manipulate the wine in the cellar. In our 2009 Chardonnay, you will find a wine of purity, acidity and minerality that is perhaps more representative of our European brothers than warm climate new world Chardonnay.
725 cs produced, 14.0% alc, 3.32 pH
The 2009 Bohan Dillon is precociously charming: pretty and aromatic, yet underscored with a crystalline acidity that will give it a long life in the cellar. For those of you seeking a balanced, aromatic and finessed expression of California pinot noir, and all at a very reasonable price, this is the wine for you.
1,235 cs produced, 13.1% alc, 3.60 pH
Limited Edition Case of 2009 Hirsch Vineyards “Bohan Dillon” Pinot Noir
Marie Hirsch hand-labelled 120 bottles with a special limited edition Bohan Dillon RED LABEL. Only available as part of the Collectors Case, of which 100 were offered. The wine is the same as the regular-label 2009 Bohan Dillon.
The San Andreas Fault is Hirsch Vineyards’ signature pinot noir and is crafted to represent the entirety of this complex vineyard. The 2009 San Andreas Fault has fruit from 21 distinct farming blocks within Hirsch Vineyards, thereby capturing a complete expression of Hirsch. Available in magnum and 750ml formats.
2,476 cs produced, 13.7% alc, 3.50 pH
The West Ridge is a series of hilltop vineyard blocks, spread along the main ridge of Hirsch like vertebrae along a spine. Altogether the West Ridge covers 28 acres and is divided into 27 farming blocks. The 2009 West Ridge Pinot Noir is a selection of the most exceptional barrels from three of the very best blocks on West Ridge, Blocks 6A, 6E and 7. These are planted to the heritage pinot noir clones of Mount Eden and Swan, as well as the Dijon clone 114.
127 cs producded, 12.9% alc, 3.48 pH
The East Ridge is a topographically distinct micro-site within Hirsch Vineyards, comprising an area of 18 acres and 16 farming blocks. With a steep northern exposure, it is planted to the heritage pinot noir clones of Mount Eden, Swan and Pommard, with a smattering of the Dijon clone 114. The 2009 East Ridge Pinot Noir is a selection of the very best barrels from our three oldest blocks within the East Ridge: Blocks 4A, 4B and 5.
160 cs produced, 13.8% alc, 3.46 pH
The 2009 Hirsch Vineyards Reserve Pinot Noir is the first ever reserve produced by Hirsch Vineyards. It represents a selection of the best barrels from the oldest and finest vineyard blocks at Hirsch. It is a true reserve of very limited production and will be produced only in vintages of exceptional quality.
326 cs of 750s produced, 20cs of magnums produced; 13.5% alc; 3.44 pH