The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.
The James Berry Vineyard is the Smith family’s estate vineyard. It is located 10 miles from the Pacific Ocean with an average elevation of 1200 feet. It consists of a series of slopes with shallow clay loam topsoil covering an ancient seabed, complete with fossilized shells and sharks teeth. The cuvee is a red fruit driven, Grenache based blend, with a large portion of Mataro for texture, and Syrah as spicy support. The James Berry Vineyard is aged for 18-20 months in a variety of vessels. The Grenache portion ages in concrete tank and larger puncheons, while the Mataro and Syrah ages in the smaller French barrels. A high percentage of them are new. The wine is rich and layered. Raspberries and blackberries lead the way followed by Provincial herbs and smooth dense tannins. Our wines are never racked off their lees and are bottled unfined and unfiltered.
A vintage of contrasts
The 2007 vintage contrasted with previous vintages and with early predictions—yet grape growers brilliantly adapted to changing conditions. The year began dry with a warmer-than-normal winter that continued into spring, resulting in earlier budding, bloom and set. A mild-to-cool summer finished with a Labor Day heat spike that added the boost of sugar development that fruit needed to complement the excellent acid structure developed in the white varieties.
Harvest started in early to mid-August. Unseasonably cool weather and nearly an inch of rain in the second week of October did not affect the crops as Indian Summer returned with warm, clear days and vineyard crews sprang into action to finish harvest for a vintage of exceptional quality.