10 May

Big Reviews for 2010 Clos de la Techs

The grapes for CLDT’s 2010s were hand harvested between mid-September and mid-October. After an extended cold soak, the fruit underwent traditional vinification methods including foot crushing, whole cluster fermentations with native yeast, malolactic fermentation on the lees and gravity transfer (no pumping). The wines were aged in Francois Frères barrels (Bertrange Forest) for 12 months and bottled unfiltered.  Below are recent scores from the Wine Enthusiast and the Critics Challenge.



2010 Santa Cruz Mountains Estates
                              93 Points Cellar Selection
Coming from one of the more tech-savvy yet Old World-practicing producers, this still-emerging wine smells of autumn. Crushed, dried-leaf aromas meld seamless with wet clay, black lava rocks and juniper. A lean line of black cherry-blackberry syrup drives the palate, which picks up black peppercorn, anise, dark chocolate and pine-sprinkled earth. Drink 2018–2030.
2010 Domaine Lois Louise Cote Sud                             95 Points
Black-cherry fruit shows on the nose of this bottling by Silicon Valley veterans T.J. and Valeta Rodgers, but it is deftly hidden behind layers of earth and herbs, from dark clay and black pepper to budding violets and rosemary. The acidity is slowly simmering on the palate, unleashing flavors of dark chocolate, cinnamon, more rosemary, blackberry and pencil-lead minerality.
2010 Domaine Valeta Sunny Slope                               95 Points
Aromas of plum, black cherry and mulberry are enhanced by crushed graphite, clove dust, scarlet rose petals and menthol on the nose of this bottling. The palate reveals a stunning amount of depth, with eucalyptus leaf, white sage, violet petals, rose hips and pine needles giving depth to the rich black-plum fruit.
2010 Domaine Lois Louise Twisty Ridge                      95 Points Cellar Selection
Dark clay, vanilla bean, Vietnamese cinnamon, black gravel, kola nut, marjoram, smoked tobacco and black plum notes come into play on the nose of this stellar bottling from a 1,700-foot vineyard atop the appellation. It’s rich in lush tannic texture but not overripe in flavors, with black cherry fruit laying a base for black pepper, juniper, sage and crushed slate.



2010 Domaine Lois Louise Cote Sud                             92 Points (Gold Medal)
2010 Santa Cruz Mountains Estates                             93 Points (Gold Medal)


27 Jul

Wine Enthusiast – 2009 Clos de la Techs

Clos de la Tech 2009 Domaine Lois Louise Cote Sud Pinot Noir
91 Points Cellar Selection
From the estate vineyard of a winery founded in 1994 by Silicon Valley mogul TJ Rodgers of Cypress Semi- conductor, the grapes must be picked by a special tractor-on-wires because they are so steeply plant- ed. Like the other 2009s, this Pinot Noir is characterized by strong tannins, meaning that it will last. Unlike the others, this one boats a more mushroom- driven nose between shiitake and porcini, with a touch of mocha. The palate reveals caramelized raspberry, graphite and silty flavors.

Clos de la Tech 2009 Domaine du Docteur Rodgers Pinot Noir
93 Points
While impressive now for its weight and flavor profile, this should evolve well, thanks to its heavy tannins and ample concentration. Right now, there is wet earth and prominent mint on the nose. The palate also picks up spearmint, with sagebrush, licorice and tobacco as well. The tannins emerge at the end of the sip, and will continue to smooth out beyond 2020.

Clos de la Tech 2009 Domaine Lois Louise Twisty Ridge Pinot Noir
93 Points Cellar Selection
Opaque in its deep purple color, this micro- chip-toting bottle fills the nose with the wet clay and menthol aromas. On the palate, graphite and black volcanic rock come with a touch of caramelized fruit and dark spices, such as black pepper, that take hold. Still rich with tannins, this will continue to emerge until 2024 if not longer.

Clos de la Tech 2009 Domaine Valeta Sunny Slope Pinot Noir
90 Points
This particular Valeta vineyard is 2,350-feet above the Bay Area in a site that deals with lots of wind, rain and sometimes snow. The aromas are menthol, wet clay and mocha, and the palate delivers dark chocolate and pasilla chile. The tannins are a constant from Clos de la Tech, so hang onto this one to 2018.

Clos de la Tech 2009 Domaine Lois Louise Pinot Noir
92 Points Cellar Selection
The most affordable offering in the Clos de la Tech portfolio, it offers cinnamon and other baking spices plus caramel on the nose. These are followed by a palate rich in cola nut, cranberry, tar and cherry flavors. Like its sister wines, this is loaded with tannins, so expect steady evolution and improvement through 2019.