Porthos | The Wine Insiders
Pahlmeyer
pahlmeyer_logo.jpg Winemaking
Using only fruit from well-tended vines, Pahlmeyer approaches winemaking in a way that is at once both time-worn and cutting edge. The grapes are picked at a high Brix, and once destemmed and crushed, brought through primary and malolactic fermentation with indigenous yeasts. Interestingly, the red grape regime includes whole-berry fermentation in small lots, which softens tannins and magnifies fruit flavors. The Chardonnay meanwhile undergoes barrel fermentation in 100% new French oak barrels. It is then aged on the lees for almost one year and in most vintages bottled neither fined nor filtered. The red wines are aged in a combination of new (80%) and one-year-old barrels for approximately two years and then bottled unfined and unfiltered.


The Vineyards
The grapes for Pahlmeyer Red Wine come from steep hillside plantings, most notably the Olive Hill acreage of Rancho Chimiles in Wooden Valley, and York Creek Vineyard on Spring Mountain. The fruit for our Merlot bottling originates from three separate and distinct sources: the Moon Vineyard in the Carneros, the Thorvilos Vineyard at the base of Howell Mountain, and David Abreu's Madrona Ranch above St. Helena. Finally, our Chardonnay grapes come primarily from the Berlenbach Vineyard, located in the Coombsville region, which possesses a soil composition most analogous to that of Burgundy.


Over time, Pahlmeyer has nurtured relations with growers willing to acknowledge revolutionary viticultural practices to aid our pursuit of creating powerful wines. Jayson works with growers to implement radical growing techniques including severe crop thinning and strict canopy management. By creating an environment for balanced growth, Pahlmeyer can harvest ultra-ripe fruit without disrupting the levels of acid and pH. The result is wine with intense concentration and finesse: "industrial strength" wine with polish and panache.