Kathy Joseph established Fiddlehead Cellars to capture the pure essence of the two grape varietals that she loves best – Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. Now in her twentieth vintage as “Head Fiddle”, Kathy continues to passionately pursue her goal of creating stylistic Sauvignon Blancs and silky, intense Pinot Noirs.
As the Founder, Proprietor and Winemaker for Fiddlehead, Kathy is a hands-on leader of the winemaking team at Fiddlehead. Terroir-driven, Fiddlehead’s Sauvignon Blanc wines hail from the stellar eastern-end of the Santa Ynez Valley, while her estate Pinot Noirs showcase the cooler Santa Rita Hills in the western-most part of that transverse valley. And loving the nuances of place, Kathy continues to craft intriguing Pinot Noir from Oregon’s Willamette Valley.
The tasting room is located in the famed Lompoc wine Ghetto where a number of high quality producers are located in a warehouse district just a few miles from the vineyards of the Santa Rita Hills.
Kathy's winemaking overview:
-A Loire-styled wine, targeting balance between fruit and texture.
-Modest alcohol levels for drinkability.
-Fermented 1/3 in Stainless, 1/3 in new French oak, 1/3 in neutral French oak.
-Ripeness is assessed by taste with a desire for riper, more fruit-driven flavors (verses greener characteristics) and vibrant (but not excessive) natural grape acidity.
-The grapes are carefully farmed so that the vines’ physiological indicators of ripeness coincide with maximum ripe flavors. (i.e. we maximize the purpose of the plant)
-Whole cluster pressed to minimize harsh tannin extraction and to maximize delicacy in the finished wine.
-Tight grain Damy barrels are the cooper of choice to maximize the elegance and to incorporate oak, more for texture and less for aroma.
-Strictly non-malolactic to preserve true varietal character.
-Aged on the lees in barrel for 9 months to maximize body and creamy mid-palate textures.
-Bottle aged to mature the wine out of a youthful, awkward stage into a resolved wine with finesse.