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Sequana Vineyards

Owner(s) The Hess Collection
Web site www.sequanavineyards.com
 
Link to this site

This label features single vineyard Pinot Noirs crafted by James MacPhail (MacPhail Family Wines). MacPhail mentored under Gary Farrell and Merry Edwards in the 1990s. Industry veteran Tom Selfridge recruited MacPhail to create a new winery sourcing grapes from the Green Valley of Russian River Valley and the Santa Lucia Highlands. Selfridge subsequently retired and Sequana is now owned by Hess Family Estates. MacPhail handles all viticulture duties. The label debuted with the 2007 vintage.

Sequana is named in honor of the Franco-Roman Goddess of the River Seine, which flows through the ancestral birthplace of Pinot Noir in France.

Five Pinot Noirs were released in 2008-2009: a Russian River Valley blend, Dutton Ranch (Green Valley of Russian River Valley), Lakeview Vineyard in Green Valley, a Santa Lucia Highlands blend, and Sundawg Ridge Vineyard (Green Valley of Russian River Valley, 6.9 acres owned by Kensler family who planted the vineyard in 1999, Sequana is the sole producer from this vineyard). Additional vineyards are being developed for Sequana in the Russian River.

The wines are sold on the website, on-premise and through national retail distribution. Stylistically, they are similar to the MacPhail Family Pinot Noirs.

Sequana Vineyards and MacPhail Family Wines were acquired by The Hess Collection in 2011 with MacPhail remaining as the winemaker for both labels.

Reviewed Wines

2010 Sequana Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., pH 3.96, TA 0.60, 5,952 cases, $32. From two 10-year-old blocks of the Sarmento Vineyard each planted to a distinctive clone: 50% 667 and 50% Pommard. Aged 9 months sur lie in 40% new French oak cooperage. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. The nose is heavily oak-driven with a prominent scent of mocha java, and demure aromas of dark stone fruits and floral bouquet. Very fruity and pleasant to drink with flavors of black raspberries, black cherries, grilled mushrooms and black olives with a hint of candied rose. On the lighter side for a Santa Lucia Highlands bottling, with very silky tannins making it very user-friendly. Good. Reviewed October 26, 2012 ARTICLE »

2010 Sequana Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.6% alc., TA 0.57, 2,597 cases, $38. Sourced from Sundawg Ridge, Dutton Ranch and Lakeview vineyards in the Green Valley of Russian River Valley. Pommard and Dijon clone 115. Aged sur lie 11 months in 40% new French oak barrels. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. An array of aromas rise from the glass including black cherries, rose petals, wood box and a hint of citrus. Medium weight flavors of black cherries, cola and spice with the slightest hint of oak. Definitely Russian River Valley in character but a bit lean and ordinary. Decent. Reviewed October 26, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Sequana Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.7% alc., pH 3.65, TA 0.56, 2,350 cases, $38. Grapes sourced from Green Valley of Russian River Valley. Aged sur lie in 40% new French oak barrels for 11 months. Winemaker is James MacPhail. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Nicely perfumed with scents of fresh baked cherry pie, ripe strawberries and cut flowers. Elegantly composed with pleasing flavors of red cherries, cola and savory herbs. The texture is marked by silk and satin. Quintessential Russian River Valley Pinot. Very good. Reviewed April 11, 2011 ARTICLE »

2009 Sequana Sundawg Ridge Vineyard Green Valley of Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., pH 3.46, TA 0.64, 523 cases, $50. 6.9-acre sustainably-farmed vineyard planted by the Kensler family in 1999. Goldridge soils. Sequana is the sole producer of wine from this vineyard. Winemaker is James MacPhail. Clones are Pommard, 115 and Calera. Aged 11 months in 40% new French oak barrels. · Moderately dark reddish-purple color in the glass. The nose offers little more than oak-driven aromas. Full-bodied and fruity, but not complex, featuring darker cherries and berries and mild fine-grain tannins. A little more enticing the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle, but still dominated by mocha java aromas and flavors from oak. Cellaring may allow for more oak integration over time, but this will always be an oaky wine. Decent. Reviewed January 11, 2012 ARTICLE »

2007 Sequana Sarmento Vineyard Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

14.8% alc., pH 3.82, $32. · Winemaking regimen same as for Sundawg Ridge bottling. Heavily oaked fruit with an underpinning of earth and herbs on both the nose and palate. Smoothly textured with restrained tannins and a dry finish which leaves an unpleasant oak tug. Decent. Reviewed October 29, 2009 ARTICLE »

2007 Sequana Vineyards Dutton Ranch Green Valley of Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., $40. Crafted by James McPhail. · Ripe aromas and flavors of strawberries, black cherries with a sidecar of sweet oak. Rich and luscious with a satiny mouth feel and gossamer tannins. Hard to say no to. Perfectly fine the next day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Very good. Reviewed February 15, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Sequana Sundawg Ridge Vineyard Green Valley of Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

15.1% alc., pH 3.58, $50. This vineyard is planted in Goldridge soils over marine sedimentary sandstone and the site is heavily influenced by morning and evening fog. After cold soak, the grapes were fermented in small, open-top tanks using primarily native yeast. Hand punch downs. Aged on the lees in 40% new French oak for 11 months. · Leads off with aromas of black cherries, oak and mint. Dark cherries and berries are featured on the well-endowed palate with accents of earth, cola and oak. The fruit is encased in healthy, ripe tannins. The alcohol is well-integrated. May warrant a better rating in a year or two. Decent (+). Reviewed October 29, 2009 ARTICLE »