Growing Conditions

The warmer-than-normal winter, along with relatively dry weather, allowed for an earlier budbreak with flowering beginning in the early part of May. Mild temperatures continued through July, paving the way for harvest towards the beginning of August. The vintage is remembered as a drawn-out one due to cool temperatures in August and September, with only a brief heat spike around Labor Day. With no rush to harvest, the grapes were picked at their optimal ripeness for sparkling wine, with delicious flavors, low sugars and high acidities. County Composition: 41% Mendocino, 32% Sonoma, 21% Napa, 6% Marin

Bottling

Bottled: April 22, 2008

Winemaking

Though primarily Pinot Noir, small amounts of select Chardonnay lots are added to the blend to lend additional backbone and length to the palate. Distinct barrel- and malolactic-fermented lots are also layered in to provide viscosity and depth. Barrel Fermentation: 40% Principal Pinot Noir Blocks: Sonoma County: Saltonstall Marin County: Stevens Mendocino County: Juster

Aging

Each bottle is aged in contact with the yeast in Schramsberg’s historic Diamond Mountain hillside caves for more than seven years, affording the development of seasoned, roasted and caramelized richness. The yeast is then removed and a finishing dosage, determined through extensive and comprehensive trials, is added to fine-tune the wine’s balance of flavor.

Food Pairing

Schramsberg Reserve is well-suited with a main course, such as fruit-stuffed veal, pork tenderloin, roasted duck with mango, cedar-plank grilled salmon, and curried chicken salad. This flavorful bubbly also can be served as an apéritif with smoked oysters, caviar and hard cheeses such as aged Swiss Sbrinz, Sonoma Vella Jack or Irish Coolea.