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Trousseau + Cali Limestone + Raj Parr = Magic

Raj Parr, Trousseau and California Limestone

There are many great things about California! But, for wine nerds, there is one glaring imperfection which lies in California's soils: there isn’t enough limestone! Europe, by contrast, enjoys a high concentration of limestone, one reason wine production has long thrived there.

A few Californians have taken this problem seriously. Josh Jensen, most famously, founded his winery, Calera, around the principal of locating limestone-rich sites in the Central Coast region of California. He has made some of the State’s greatest Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays. Thomas Stolpman is another. He found Ballard Canyon, tucked away in the hills near Santa Barbara and rich in limestone. Rather than focus on Calera’s Burgundy varieties, he went with Syrah and Rousanne.

But guess who knew something about other grape varieties that like to grow in limestone soils? Enter: Raj Parr. Raj brought Peter Stolpman (who now runs Stolpman Vineyards) Trousseau from the likes of Ganevat, Puffeney and Tissot. The men became convinced the variety would work perfectly in Stolpman’s canyon, so they grafted some Trousseau to 20 year-old Sangiovese rootstock, and off they went. And now...?

They’re five vintages into their project, and they have proven their point.

The 2018 Trousseau from the Raj Parr/Stolpman collaboration, which they call “Combe,” is their best yet. Fresh and juicy, and brimming with cherries, it shows a serious but light-touch structure from the whole-cluster fermentation. It’s a great argument for Trousseau in California limestone. And further proof that California can produce reasonably-priced artisanal wines that are fresh, drinkable and worth contemplating. But they only make tiny quantities and you have a once-per-vintage shot at acquiring any.

Click through now to grab your bottles!

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