Fine tiny bubbles and a long lasting mousse are the usual footprints of the L’ERMITAGE cuvee. This cuvee is showing great notes of “tarte tatin”: baked apples and buttery crust, with notes of apricot and delicate vanilla bean. The mouthfeel is creamy, expresses flavors of quince and bread crust, with a clean and crisp yet long finish. The wine for the dosage added to the L’ERMITAGE 2003 was 2004 wine liquor aged for 5.5 years in a French oak cask. Following disgorgement, L’ERMITAGE 2003 was aged an additional six months (minimum) on the cork prior to release. 52% Chardonnay, 48% Pinot Noir, 4% aged reserve wine (vintage ’99) The 2003 vintage was fairly wet with more than 11 inches of rain during the growing season. Overall, spring and summer were mild and even though we had an early bud break we ended up picking our grapes fairly late. Long hang time is beneficial to the grapes to allow for ripeness (sugar maturity) as well as phenolic maturity (aromas, tannins and anthocyanins). The crop quantity was above average and the fruit was well balanced in acidity.