Kessler-Haak Vineyard & Wines

Owner(s) Ellen Haak Kessler, Dan Kessler
Web site www.kesslerhaakwine.com
 
Link to this site

Limited production estate grown Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and sparkling wine from Dan and Ellen Haak Kessler. Kessler-Haak Vineyard was planted in 2005 by Carr and is the largest of the vineyards managed by them in the Santa Rita Hills. The vineyard has 27 acres of Pinot Noir & (7 clones on 3 rootstocks) and 2.5 acres of Chardonnay (3 clones on low-vigor rootstock).

The first harvest from Kessler-Haak Vineyard was 2008 and the winery was launched the following year. Dan, who has a certificate in winemaking from UC Davis and works as an assistant winemaker at La Fond Winery, is in charge of winegrowing and winemaking.

The wines are sold on the website.

Reviewed Wines

2013 Kessler-Haak Sta. Rita Hills Rosé of Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., dry, 80 cases, $23. Harvest Brix 22.0º. Clones 113, 115, 667 and 777. Grapes were de-stemmed, direct to press for 24 hours before lightly pressing. The juice was transferred to old neutral French oak barrels and allowed to naturally ferment for 9 months before bottling. · Moderate pinkish red color in the glass. Complex nose with aromas of alpine strawberry, cherry, wood fern, and herbs. Crisp and refreshingly dry, with bright flavors of strawberry, peach and cherry, and a hint of pine. The cherry fruit really hangs on to the finish resulting in an unusually long finish for a rosé wine. Score: 89. Reviewed April 20, 2015 ARTICLE »

2013 Kessler-Haak Sta. Rita Hills Chardonnay

14.6% alc., pH 3.24, TA 0.67, 240 cases, $29. Harvest Brix 24.0º. Clones 76 and 95. 100% malolactic fermentation. Aged 10 months in French oak barrels, 20% new. · Light golden yellow color and clear in the glass. Engaging aromas of lemon oil, fresh caramel apple, and brioche. Full-flavored and slightly viscous on the palate, with inviting tastes of lemon curd, honey, apple and subtle oak. There is a vibrant cut of underlying acidity and a pleasing lemon-lime finish. Impressive wine at this price point. Score: 92. Reviewed April 20, 2015 ARTICLE »

2013 Kessler-Haak Ohana Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 650 cases, $40. Clones 113, 114, 115, 667, 777, and Wädenswil 2A. Aged in French oak barrels, 17% new. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. Initially, the nose is primarily savory with aromas of earthy flora, brier and barrel, with shy cherry fruit showing up over time in the glass. Discreetly concentrated, juicy and silky, with a mid weight core of black cherry and dark berry fruits accented with notes of anise, tea leaf and dark chocolate. Good balance, with a modest finish. Score: 89. Reviewed December 1, 2016 ARTICLE »

2013 Kessler-Haak Four Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.7% alc., 50 cases, $42. 100% Pommard. Aged in French oak barrels, 50% new. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Soaring aromas of cherry, spice, bark and rose petal. Modest in weight, but highly flavorful, with a well-spiced core of fresh cherry fruit framed by supportive oak. The cherry fruit is perfectly ripened with appropriate phenolic expression. Highlights include silky tannins, immersed alcohol, and a hedonistic finish that really holds on. For me, Pommard clearly produces the most engaging single clone wine among all the Pinot Noir clones. Score: 92. Reviewed December 1, 2016 ARTICLE »

2013 Kessler-Haak Intuition Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

13.21% alc., 50 cases, $42. 100% Wädenswil 2A. Aged in French oak barrels, 0% new. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. The nose is primary, with little to report other than aromas of potpourri. More giving on the palate, with a robust core of well-ripened black raspberry and blackberry fruits underlain with a green note, finishing with juicy, slightly tart acidity. This clone is known for providing aromatic lift, but it is absent in this wine. Score: 87. Reviewed December 1, 2016 ARTICLE »

2013 Kessler-Haak Sanctuary Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 150 cases, $42. 50% clone 113 and 50% clone 114. Aged in French oak barrels, 10% new. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. Pleasant scents of cherry pie, bakery and toast. Rich and bold in a mid weight plus style, filled with luscious black cherry fruit that saturates the mid palate, yet silky and polished and easy to like. Fruit-driven and plush, and hard to resist. Score: 90. Reviewed December 1, 2016 ARTICLE »

2013 Kessler-Haak Symphony Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.04% alc., 75 cases, $42. 50% clone 115 and 50% clone 777. Aged in French oak barrels, 33% new. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. The nose is primary, offering little to describe. The big boy of the lineup, with generous bass in this symphony. Fullboded flavors of black fruits and mocha with oak seasoning in the background. Satiny in the mouth, with firm but slippery tannins, finishing with a bold charge of fruit. Cellaring would be advised to allow time for the nose to arrive. Score: 90. Reviewed December 1, 2016 ARTICLE »

2013 Kessler-Haak Synergy Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., 400 cases, $42. Composition is 55% Pommard, 25% 777 and 20% 667. Aged in French oak barrels, 10% new. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Aromas of blackberry and tobacco oak lead to a middleweight styled wine with plenty of black cherry and black raspberry fruit flavors to satisfy. Seamless and silky, even seductive in the mouth with some finishing generosity. A solid wine, but I wanted more Pinot perfume and a less tobacco highlights. Score: 89. Reviewed December 1, 2016 ARTICLE »

2012 Kessler-Haak Sta. Rita Hills Chardonnay

14.6% alc., pH 3.41, TA 0.61, dry. 65 cases, $29. Estate grown fruit. Yield 1.7 tons per acre. Clones 95, 96, 76. Barrel fermented and barrel aged sur lie for 8 months in 15% new French oak barrels. · Mild golden yellow color and clear in the glass. The pleasing fruit aromas of lemon and golden apple are somewhat obscured by a toasty, nutty oak topcoat. Discreetly rich on the palate with flavors of baked apple, poached pear and citrus peel, finishing with a burst of refreshing citrus. Slightly creamy in texture. Oak is less intrusive on the palate than on the nose. Improves over time in the glass. Score: 88. Reviewed March 29, 2014 ARTICLE »

2012 Kessler-Haak Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 425 cases, $38. Estate grown fruit. Vineyard owned by Dan Kessler and his spouse Ellen Haak Kessler. Winemaker is Dan Kessler. Yield 0.96 tons per acre. Clones 114, 115, 777 and 2A. Aged 9 months in 40% new French oak barrels. · Moderately dark reddish purple color in the glass. Uplifting aromas of dark berry preserves, cardamom spice and briar. Light in weight but flavorful, with notes of blackberry, cassis and plum infused with bright, juicy acidity. A vein of savory, dried herbs and oak is in the background. The tannins are well integrated and the wine is quite open now. Score: 88. Reviewed March 29, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Kessler-Haak Sta. Rita Hills Chardonnay

13.4% alc., , RS 0.96, 50 cases, $29. Estate grown fruit. Yield 0.46 tons per acre. Clones 95, 76. Barrel fermented and barrel aged 8 months sur lie in 50% new French oak, 100% MLF. · Pale golden yellow and clear in the glass. The nose exhibits aromas of lemon rind, ripe apple, buttered brioche and pavement after rain. Bright flavors of lemon, poached pear, blonde caramel and vanilla infused with a spark of nervy minerality, complimented by nutty oak in the background. Score: 88. Reviewed March 29, 2014 ARTICLE »

2010 Kessler-Haak Kessler-Haak Vineyard Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 225 cases, $38. Yield 1.2 tons per acre. Clones 115, 667 and 777. Aged in 33% new French oak barrels for 9 months. Unfined. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Dusty earth and oak vanillin aromas compliment the spicy black raspberry nose. Moderately full bodied with flavorful dark red and black fruits, a sidecar of spice, and a good lick of citrus-driven acidity on the back end. Shows the intense fruit balanced with a firm structure and bright acidity so typical of Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir. Held up well over night from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Very good. Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Kessler-Haak Kessler-Haak Vineyard Clone 2A Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 50 cases, $42. Yield 0.7 tons per acre. Aged 9 months in neutral French oak barrels. Unfined. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. Dark red and black cherry and berry preserve aromas and flavors are featured in a mid weight wine with muscular tannins and a good kick of acidity on the finish. A little smoother and less tannic the next day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. For those who like their Pinot rugged and firm. Good. Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Kessler-Haak Kessler-Haak Vineyard Pommard Clone Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 50 cases, $42. Aged 9 months in 50% new French oak barrels. Unfined. · The nose leads with aromas of deeply colored cherries and berries, plum sauce, beet root and dried rose petal. Striking black cherry flavor which expands in the mouth, picking up accents of spice along the way, finishing with a big kiss of cherry. Complimentary backbone of lively acidity and well-mannered tannins. I have said it many times and I will say it again: Pommard is my paramour (and the alliteration is pretty good too). Very good. Reviewed February 27, 2013 ARTICLE »



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