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Vineyard: Suacci Vineyard is a sustainably farmed vineyard located southwest of Sebastopol in Blucher Valley, just 10 miles from the Pacific Ocean. It has a proven track record of producing intensely complex wines often at lower ripeness levels. The vineyard’s hallmark is its tiny clusters and small berry sizes. The 6.5 acre vineyard was planted in 1993 to clones 115 and 777.
Vintage: We were up against it in the 2017 vintage. The Labor Day heat spike that smothered the North Coast sent the Suacci Vineyard to the brink. Our sugars shot up 4-5 brix in a matter of days. Fortunately, the vineyard was able to recover after the heat spike. We saw a brix drop in the vineyard and flavors were able to catch up. The yield was just over a ton an acre and the fruit was riper than we have historically harvested at Suacci Vineyard. Despite those challenges, there is no denying the overall deliciousness of the wine produced in this difficult growing season.
Tasting Notes: The 2017 Suacci is a rich and juicy Pinot Noir. The wine shows fresh-picked blackberries and Santa Rosa plum Asian spices. On the palate the flavors follow with black cherry, tea and cracked peppercorn. The juicy core of acidity leads to a long smooth finish.
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It didn’t take long before we fell hard for Pinot Noir. We were living in San Francisco and Matt was working at Bacchus & Venus in Sausalito, right at the moment when the Sideways effect was propelling California Pinot Noir to new heights. After the drive home across the Golden Gate Bridge, he would usually arrive at our shoebox apartment with a leftover bottle or two from the day’s tastings. We would eat dinner and drink some incredible wines, and think about our future. Was it possible to one day make our own Pinot Noir?
Suddenly it was 2007 and we were engaged and driving a U-Haul to start a new life in Sonoma County. After an internship at Siduri, Matt began working at Vinify, a custom crush winery full of people who were living their winemaking dreams. It was an ambitious, contagious environment. The bug bit hard, and it was not long before we purchased our first ton of grapes.
Vaughn Duffy is now part of the boom of first-generation winemaking families in California. We feel lucky to be living in a time when hard work, creativity and a little help from your friends can trump the need for huge amounts of capital investment. Two kids who didn’t really know any better can now get their wine on the shelf next to the icons who inspired them to make wine in the first place. We invite you to be a part of the journey ahead.
All the best,
Matt Duffy & Sara Vaughn
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