ON A LICHEN COVERED HILLSIDE IN ANDERSON VALLEY
The Lichen Estate
The Anderson Valley has quickly become one of California’s most sought after regions for Pinot Noir. Wineries of all sizes are buying land and securing fruit as the region’s reputation continues to skyrocket. Located in Mendocino County along Highway 128 between the towns of Yorkville Highlands to the east and Navarro to the west, the conditions for growing Pinot Noir are perfect. Moderately warm days followed by cool nights during the growing season, ensure ripened fruit with vibrant natural acidity.
We are lucky enough to procure a small amount of Pinot Noir from the Lichen Estate, located on the north side of 128 right at the Boonville/Philo border, in the heart of the region. Doug Stewart, owner and farmer of the estate, planted the 23 acre vineyard to several clones of Pinot Noir as well as Pinot Gris in 2007. We met Doug for the first time while visiting his winery. After tasting through the valley, we were particularly impressed with Doug’s different variations of Pinot Noir, and felt as if the wines were reflective of the region. Doug’s talent as a winemaker was clear, but more importantly, a detail-oriented farmer. After some discussion of our goals, Doug made a few clones available to us. Part of our inaugural vintage, the Lichen Estate delivers everything we could expect from Anderson Valley Pinot Noir.