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Idlewild Wines, 'Flora & Fauna' Red BlendNorth Coast, California 2021 (750mL)

From the Wine Shop

Idlewild Wines, 'Flora & Fauna' Red Blend North Coast, California 2021 (750mL)

“Idlewild’s Sam Bilbro believes there’s a place for Piedmontese grape varieties in California—the cool, rugged slopes of Mendocino County.”

Idlewild “has a few homes,” including Lost Hills Ranch, which sits in the hills of Mendocino County’s Yorkville Highlands in soils of schist and sandstone. They also manage the Fox Hill Vineyard in central Mendocino county, another rocky site planted to 20- to 30-year-old Arneis, Cortese, Dolcetto, Barbera, and Nebbiolo. A third high-elevation site in the Russian River Valley provides source material for this wine.

Mendocino County continues to be home to a huge Italian-American agricultural community, and Sam Bilbro pays homage to that history while also crafting wines in a deliberately “Italian” style. He believes—and has proved—that cooler, high-elevation sites in Mendocino can be hospitable to Northern Italian grape varieties, especially the Piedmontese triumvirate of Nebbiolo, Barbera, and Dolcetto.

This is a wine designed to deliver lots of nerve and minerality. Combining lots from the above-mentioned vineyards, it is a Barbera-based blend that also incorporates Dolcetto, Nebbiolo, Freisa, and Grignolino—essentially a “greatest hits” compilation of Piedmontese varieties. The grapes were subjected to a partial carbonic maceration, à la Cru Beaujolais, with whole grape clusters left intact to preserve brightness and energy. It aged for just four months in neutral oak barrels before bottling.

  • CountryUnited States
  • RegionCalifornia / Mendocino County
  • SoilSandy Loam, Schist & Sandstone
  • FarmingSustainable
  • BlendBarbera, Dolcetto, Nebbiolo
  • Alcohol13%
  • OakNeutral Barrels
  • Temp.Serve at 60-65° F
  • GlasswareBurgundy Stem
  • DrinkingNow-2026
  • Decanting30 Minutes

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