La Voix 'Reflektor' Pinot Noir, Sta Rita Hills, USA, 2015
Vineyard: John Sebastiano Vineyard
Fermentation: 25% whole cluster
Aging Length: 22 months in barrel
Oak: French oak, 10% new/native yeast
Quantities: 92 cases produced
The Vineyards Voice
The 2015 "Reflektor" is from the John Sebastiano Vineyard located on the eastern side of the Sta. Rita Hills appellation. This wine is 100% Mount Eden clone Pinot Noir—Mount Eden is one of the several "heritage clones" that are now seeing a resurgence in popularity—made from grapes that were harvested during the cool early morning hours. The grapes were fermented in open-top containers and held for 30 days with extended maceration. They were de-stemmed and meticulously sorted, gently pressed directly to barrel, and aged in French oak for 22 months, with 10% new oak used.
Ian Blackburn Voice - Buyer for Merchant of Wine, Wine Educator + Music Fan
Steve Clifton is one of Santa Barbara’s chosen sons. Steve was the co-founder of the successful Brewer Clifton project, which sold to Kendall-Jackson in 2017. La Voix is a new chapter, a new band. Steve is a singer songwriter with a great spirit, but make no mistake, he is a great winemaker first and foremost. Personally, I think he is one of the greatest souls on earth; he reverberates love and respect of wine and all people in the industry. The resulting works he authors are true, and built with incredible orchestration.
The 2015 “Reflektor” is an arcade of fiery (see what I did there?) nuances. This is one of the great vineyard sites of Santa Rita Hills and features patented fruit character in a combination of dried cherry on base, and maraschino cherry on rhythm guitar. There is a flare for the dramatic in this wine - a wild candle - a brown spice and dried brush potpourri - like incense burning at a Doors concert with candles as the only source of light… black leather jackets everywhere… the nose of this wine is inspirational, aspirational, and excites the mind like a band walking out on stage. The mouth has fruit, earth, stone notes and texture that tells you that this is a wine that can perform tonight or live a long life in the library.
I’m really excited to share this wine and encourage you to get involved in this La Voix program. Steve’s wines are just too good to not actively search them out. He is starting over here, but like a seasoned professional. His dependable work is vintage, honest and pure, and I love it. 94-96 Points - Depending on which song is on in the background!
PS. If this were Burgundy (and it’s not trying to be, this is noble Santa Barbara), I would think to compare it to a Volnay. There are so many sexy, feminine, elegant features here…. sassy, robust, but tender; this wine is lovable, delicious and should be on your playlist immediately.
Also – there is a chance to come and see Steve Clifton in person, as he will be one of approximately 20 visiting winemakers, among the 50 wineries being poured at STARS of PINOT, Los Angeles’ highest quality Pinot Noir gathering at the Montage Beverly Hills on July 17th — tickets at www.wineLA.com/events
Gold - San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
91 Points - Wine Enthusiast