chëpìka Catawba PetNat Finger Lakes
The duo Pascaline Lepeltier (Racines) & Nathan Kendall (Nathan K. Wines) is back with their famed boutique chëpika wines focusing in organic grown hybrid grapes and naturally made wine from the Finger Lakes.
The vines come from the Buzzards Crest Vineyard. This site sits on heavy clay soil and is located on the east side of Keuka Lake. It has been owned and farmed by the same family and certified organic since the early 90’s. This vineyard has the highest elevation of all sites they work with. 2020 was the warmest and driest year on record. The major difference with 2019 is that they only did 1 hour of skin contact, whereas the 2019 was 4. Less skin contact because they wanted to reduce the phenolics. The bottles are all hand riddled and then disgorged during the week on May 24th, “à la volée” without any dosage added and no SO2. The pressure is likely around 4.5 atmospheres giving the wine slightly more alcohol (10%) and slightly less acid. The 2020 Catawba has the reductive element that the 2016 had, the fruit character of the 2017, and great austerity that we haven’t seen before. Unfortunately, the production is still really small and even smaller than previous year 25% less.