Wine Enthusiast 93 points - This compelling Monument Tree Pinot offers a sauvage earthiness, layers of red cherry and blueberry fruit and a depth of character packaged deftly around its silky smooth texture. This is a knockout wine, a testament to the power of great farming and winemaking in a cool year. (Oct 2013)
Named for the landmark redwood tree that looms like a proud parent over the vineyard, Monument Tree was planted in 1999 to Dijon clones. The soils are comprised of gravelly loam which lends a unique, site-specific black spice character with a brilliant spine of bright acidity. This low vigor site was originally planted by Napa Valley’s famed Duckhorn Vineyards and is now owned by Twomey Cellars. Situated in the Deep End of Anderson Valley, this is the definition of a true, cool climate vineyard. The east and northeast facing aspects of the vineyard allow the fruit to enjoy morning light, while avoiding the heat of the afternoon sun. Organically farmed, this is a quintessential, premiere cru vineyard for Anderson Valley.
|Jon Grant is a genuine artisan and a passionate explorer… and you can taste it in his wines.
As an artisan, Jon knows that the right grape from the right vineyard, farmed by the right people, can produce wines of unmatched character and expression. As an explorer, he’s sought out the magical places – often in obscure corners of California’s finest growing regions - that offer the most harmonious synergy between grape variety and vineyard site.
In order to preserve the site-specific characteristics, Jon’s winemaking style is deliberately minimalist: gently tending to the grapes as they transform into new wines on their journey to the bottle; carefully preserving the essence of the earth, air and soil as a palpable and visceral part of the wine. The results are wines with unparalleled varietal character, purity and appeal.
CELEBRATION AND INSPIRATION
Jon celebrates the grandeur of California viticulture while finding inspiration and stylistic direction from traditional western European winemaking. His wines are complex and expressive, full of aromatic intensity and complexity without being overly concentrated. They are thoughtfully balanced and pure, and provide a true sense of place and time.
GETTING TO COULOIR
Before setting out on his own journey, winemaker Jon Grant worked in the cellars of many of Napa Valley’s top wineries, including Turley Wine Cellars, PlumpJack Winery, Corison Wines and Robert Mondavi Winery. With a world of wine experience behind him, Jon started Couloir Wines to showcase his own artistic interpretation of exceptional vineyard sites through the production of single-vineyard Pinot Noir. Straight Line Wine highlights varietal character and appellation flavors using artisan and traditional winemaking techniques.
AN EVOLUTION OF PASSIONS
So where do the names come from? Jon’s love for and appreciation of fine wine emerged from his passion for great skiing and ski mountaineering. While managing the wine store at Snowbird Ski Resort in Utah he discovered his true maitre and began maintaining the wine programs for the resort’s six fine-dining rooms. As homage to this time and the global backcountry ski explorations that followed, he named his single-vineyard Pinot Noir project after the beautifully steep, life-shaping mountain gorges called couloirs. Some couloirs are auspiciously positioned for a perfect ski shot - a steep and straight line.