The 2015 Pied de Cuve Chardonnay is a pure expression of our Mulberry Tree Vineyard. The nose shows a complex mix of lemon, nectarine and apple fruit with savoury lees notes, subtle nutty oak from the neutral barrel fermentation, lemon zest and lots of stony minerality from the calcium carbonate soils. The texture is seamless and the flavours of hazelnut, citrus and stone fruit up front finish with intense minerality and electricity on the long finish.
Vintage & Production
Pied de Cuve are Little Farm's natural wines that receive almost no intervention from start to finish and are therefore a pure reflection of the place, the grape and the vintage. Pied de Cuve is a technique to start a fermentation using only the yeasts that are naturally occurring on the skin of the grapes. About a week before harvest we picked a bucket of grapes, crushed it by foot and left it to ferment in the vineyard. It is kept in the vineyard and away from the winery so the grapes' own yeast can start the fermentation, rather than in the winery where ambient yeast living in the winery from previous vintages could take over the fermentation. The 2015 vintage was another great, warmer vintage that started early allowing for perfect ripeness. We were able to pick the grapes as early as August 19th, thanks to the early start to the season, with plenty of flavour and still showing the Little Farm trademark style of crisp acidity and minerality. The grapes are organically farmed in the mineral-rich, calcium carbonate soils of our home Mulberry Tree Vineyard. Three clones are used (76, 95 & 548) and our winemaking is hands off using old neutral barrels and lees aging to give texture and complexity. The grapes were gently whole cluster pressed to old, neutral French oak barrels for fermentation and aging on the lees for around 10 months before bottling unfined and unfiltered in early August 2016.
About Little Farm Winery
Little Farm Winery is the small hands-on operation of Rhys Pender MW and Alishan Driediger. It started with a passion for wine and developed into growing and producing Chardonnay and Riesling from their Mulberry Tree Vineyard at their home in Cawston, BC in the beautiful Similkameen Valley. A dry Rosé and Cabernet Franc from Blind Creek Vineyard were added later. The goal was always to make wines with minimal manipulation and intervention that really capture the vineyard site and each year's unique growing season. The vines were planted in 2009 on the calcium carbonate rich soil, braving the unforgiving Similkameen sun and wind. The first wines were made in 2011. Total production in 2015 was 600 cases. Little Farm Winery will never be big and will always focus on making small batches of single-vineyard wine that reflect each site's unique characteristics. The goal is to make interesting, characterful, natural-ish wines and look after our little farm.
-- Rhys Pender MW, Wine Grower & Alishan Driediger, Wine Grower