Chris Hammell has been the vineyard manager at Bien Nacido since the early 2000s, and he does an incredible job, year in and year out. 2015 was a tough year for all Pinot growers, but Chris and his gang delivered Sandler's most bountiful crop at 2.5 tons per acre. The fruit is surprisingly still cool climate Santa Maria Valley in a year that was anything but cool. It's almost as if these 43 year old vines were telling Mother Nature she could choose the early harvest date, but she wasn't going to affect the flavor of the fruit.
The 2015 Sandler Bien Nacido Pinot has a weight similar to the large-framed 2010, but with the elegance and smokiness of the 2012. It should drink well from late 2017 through 2026.