Peay’s Scallop Shelf vineyard got its name when, while prepping the land for planting, viticulturist Nick Peay discovered ancient scallop and nautilus fossils in the soil strata: the vineyard’s ocean-floor past pre-dates the formation of the coastal Sonoma range where it’s located. This is a cool, breezy piece of land with a long growing season, sitting some 300 to 350 metres above sea level. You could call Peay Pinot specialists – they have a real knack for blending vineyard parcels and small lots. Their wines are not encumbered by overbearing sugar or overripe fruit and consistently retain refreshing acidity and engaging aromatic top-notes.
The single vineyard Scallop Shelf Estate Pinot Noir is a blend of six Pinot clones: Pommard, 777, 115, Swan, Mt. Eden, and 828. The wine was fermented in small, open-top fermenters, moved by gravity, aged for 11 months in new and neutral French oak barrels, and bottled unfined and unfiltered.
“The 2017 Pinot Noir Estate Scallop Shelf is distinguished by its bright, focused personality and energy. As it often is, the Scallop Shelf is a wine of reserve and tension, showing plenty of savory and mineral character and less overt fruit than some of the other wines in the range. The 2017 is likely to require at least a few years to come into its own, but it is super-impressive.”
95 points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, May 2019