Marin County



Chileno Valley


Stewart Johnson

Mark Pasternak

Harvest Dates

104/12, 9/22/12

Clonal Content

667, 777

Alcohol / pH

14.1 % / 3.72

Titratable Acidity

0.61 gms / 100mL

Barrel Aging

17 months in French Oak

(33% new)

Cases Produced


Sugggested Retail




Pinot Noir

Our Borderline bottling showcases high quality pinot noir that two dedicated growers produce near the Marin - Sonoma County border.  These vineyards lie along the southern edge of the Petaluma wind gap - a break in the coastal hills that funnels afternoon winds and summer fog straight off the Pacific, across the Point Reyes National Seashore, and into the northern reach of San Francisco Bay.  This reliable cooling eases the summer heat of Marin's interior valleys, giving the pinot noir in these vineyards a long growing season.

From the Kendric Vineyard, we take clone 777.  This vineyard, planted and farmed by Stew Johnson, lies in a secluded valley off San Antonio Road.  His vineyard rolls gently downslope below a hilltop thick with California oak and bay laurel, insuring good drainage.  The 777 brings pretty cherry and pomegranate aromas and structure to the Borderline blend.

From the Chileno Valley Vineyard, we take clone 667.  This vineyard is farmed by local icon and long time Marin County agricultural advocate Mark Pasternak.  Rolling across several hilltops on a converted dairy farm, the Chileno Valley vineyard is cooler than Kendric, and the 667 provides more powerful fruit flavors to fill out the middle of the Borderline Blend.

Winemaker Notes

2012 provided near perfect growing conditions in the Petaluma Gap, and these two Marin vineyards situated near the border with Sonoma County ripened easily.  The Chileno vineyard provided concentrated intensity as the vines entered their second year of being dry-farmed, while the Kendric vineyard yielded gorgeous fruit.

The 2012 Borderline features a heady nose full of bing cherry and sous bois, with hints of camphor.  The flavors are saturated, with layers of more cherry, frais du bois, and asian spices blending into a rich, mouthfilling expression of pinot noir.  Normally we like our Borderline with roast chicken, but the 2012 calls out for something richer, like turkey, duck or grilled portobellos.


  1. Prince of Pinot - 90 pts
    “Moderately light reddish purple color in the glass. Bright berry fruit aromas with hints of toast and herbs. Light to mid weight spice cherry and strawberry essence with a compliment of oak and a savory herb note in the background. Soft in the mouth, with supple tannins, a good cut of acidity, and very respectable finishing richness. An elegant, feminine wine that embraces the gentle side of Pinot Noir.”
    - Rusty Gaffney 11/19/14

  2. The Pinot Report - 91 points - Smart Buy Designation - subscription required
    “Medium ruby color; big, lush, earthy cherry aromas; rich cherry flavors with earthy notes and toast oak; good structure and balance; long finish. Big, rich Pinot with bold flavors. ”
    - Greg Walters 5/15/15