Press


Reviews

ALFARO FAMILY VINEYARD PINOT NOIR


2016

“Pungent amounts of cinnamon, raspberry, wet thyme and dill show on the brilliant nose of this cool-climate, 100% whole cluster bottling by Bradley Brown. It’s tart and tightly wound on the palate like a ready-to-pluck instrument, combining fresh and bright red-fruit flavors with forest-floor spice.”
95 points- Matt Kettman, Wine Enthusiast

“The 2016 Pinot Noir Alfaro Family Vineyard is a shockingly big and ample wine. A stunningly deep, resonant Pinot, the Alfaro has so much to offer. The 100% whole clusters are pretty much buried by the sheer intensity of the dark cherry and plum fruit. Hints of rose petal, mint and lavender develop with air, adding further shades of nuance. All the elements fall into place in this effortless, dramatic Pinot from Big Basin.”
94 points- Antonio Galloni, Vinous

“Moderate garnet color in the glass. Engaging nose offering aromas of darker berry and cherry, exotic spices, oak sawdust and a hint of fresh leafy greens. Up-front opulent black raspberry and blackberry fruit flavors underpinned by muscular tannins. Sheer beauty of fruit with welcome uplifting acidity and a notably long finish. When tasted the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle, the imposing tannins had mollified. This wine will benefit from more time in the cellar.”
94 points- Rusty Gaffney, PinotFile


2015

“The yields were so low in 2015 that Bradley Brown had to cajole Richard Alfaro for enough fruit to fill a fermenter and, eventually, four barrels, for this wine. The vineyard is located on the northeastern side of the Gabilan Mountains, just above Corralitos, at an elevation of 1,000 feet. Brown was happy enough with the ripeness of the stems that he fermented this wine as whole bunches, and the resulting pinot noir delivers power directly out of the tannins, dense and closed off when you pull the cork. A day later, it’s open and racy, and it doesn’t stop generating umami energy, a compression of rose-petal, red-apple-skin and black-mushroom flavors. if you’re looking for a seductive pinot fix, look no further.”
94 points- Wine & Spirits Magazine

94 points- Rusty Gaffney, PinotFile

“A gorgeous wine, the 2015 Pinot Noir Alfaro Family Vineyard is absolutely terrific. The interplay of ripe, racy fruit and whole cluster savoriness is compelling. Pliant, open and totally seductive, the 2015 will drink well with minimal cellaring, The 100% whole clusters are nearly buried by the sheer richness of the fruit. This is a terrific Pinot with potential to grow.”
93+ points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous

“One of the darker colored Pinot Noirs in the lineup, the 2015 Alfaro Family Vineyard Pinot Noir was not destemmed and spent 18 months in one-third new French oak. This rich, concentrated beauty gives up ample currant and cherry fruits, lots of spice, earth, and underbrush notes, medium to full body, good acidity, and a great finish. It’s a beautifully layered, age-worthy Pinot Noir that’s going to be better with 2-3 years of bottle age and keep for over a decade. It picks up an alluring iodine and marine quality with time in the glass.”
93 points, Jeb Dunnuck

“Deep aromas of mulberry syrup are cut by pine needles and baking spice on the nose of this single-vineyard expression by renowned vintner Bradley Brown from a famed vineyard near Watsonville. Kalamata olives show strong on the palate, alongside berry syrup, green sage, thyme and a stemmy hint of bell pepper.”
93 points- Matt Kettman, Wine Enthusiast


2014

“Big Basin’s 2014 Pinot Noir Alfaro Family Vineyard is striking in its precision and nuance. Brisk, saline and tense in style, the 2014 shows the more mid-weight style of the vintage. The 2014 was done with 100% whole clusters that are nicely integrated. Next to the 2015, the 2014 is less fleshy but more focused and tightly wound. Readers should plan on cellaring the 2014 for at least a year or two.”
93 points- Antonio Galloni, Vinous


2013

“The 2013 Pinot Noir Alfaro Family Vineyard has come together beautifully since I tasted it last year. Dark red cherry, plum, spice and leather are all nicely delineated in the glass. Pliant and expressive, the 2013 speaks to finesse. The Alfaro was done with about 30% whole clusters, low by Big Basin’s standards, but an approach that worked beautifully here”
91 points- Antonio Galloni, Vinous


2012

“The 2012 Pinot Noir Alfaro Family Vineyard is quite floral and lifted in its aromatics but denser on the palate than the bouquet suggests. Today, the elements aren’t fully put together, but there is plenty of potential. Orange peel, crushed rocks, sage and mint linger on the striking, nuanced finish.”
91+ points- Antonio Galloni, Vinous