July 11, 2012 § Leave a comment
Kathleen Inman makes singular Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Chardonnay in Sonoma, California’s Russian River Valley. It’s singular because it’s balanced and actually expresses all the natural acidity and pure, unadorned flavors of the grapes and the land they grow in. This is the exception in Russian River, where more often than not the wines are high in alcohol with overripe fruit looking for a fight — lipstick-smeared pigs, all made up with nowhere to go.
As I write in my Portland Press Herald wine column this week, Inman is a respectful, humble woman, and she makes respectful wines. She’s also a committed environmentalist, and her entire winemaking process walks a deep eco-friendly path: no -cides (pesti-, fungi-, herbi-, etc.), no funny stuff; the winery is solar-powered and composts and recycles graywater and does 1,000 other things that are good and right to do. And Inman is convinced, rightly, that these practices make for better wine, by sustaining the health, vitality and distinctiveness of the land she loves.