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|Appellation||Russian River Valley|
|Winery||Y by Yoshiki|
|Varietal(s)||100% Pinot Noir|
The color offers wonderful garnet and ruby hues with a translucent quality of elegance. The aromatics are classic to Russian River providing cherry, strawberry and fresh cut violets with subtle vanilla from the oak barrels. The palate is wonderfully fresh sharing aspects of black raspberry and Japanese wineberry with a lovely component of fresh cut hay. The textures are perfectly tense holding the elegant wine together with wonderful fresh acidity from the cooler climate of Russian River providing a delicious and smooth wine.
Over their twelve-year relationship, YOSHIKI and his winemaking partner, Rob Mondavi Jr., have produced vintage after vintage of incredible wines from California. During their last blending session, Yoshiki proposed a new challenge to Rob – to produce together a beautiful pinot noir and chardonnay from California that could stand alongside the best wines from Burgundy, France, which YOSHIKI had grown very fond of in recent years. Fortunately, Rob did not have to look far from his Napa Valley home and winery, for just over the Mayacamas mountain range lies the Russian River Valley, arguably the very best region in California to produce top quality chardonnays and pinot noirs.
The Russian River, the namesake of the valley that it flows through, pours into the Pacific Ocean and draws in cold ocean wind and fog which cools the surrounding vineyards. The slowly ripened grapes in this cool climate area is known for its lush fruit character, beautiful acidity, and complexity which are perfect for Y by YOSHIKI Russian River Valley series.
Aging:10 months in French Oak
“When I compose a song, I write the score on a piece of paper, rarely do I use a musical instrument. I can hear everything in my head. It’s almost always complete. Wine to me is a song. My imagination flows with every sip and my mind is set free.
Together with Rob Mondavi, Jr., Y was created out of my passion for wine and music.” - YOSHIKI
Story behind Y by YOSHIKI
“Y by YOSHIKI” wine is created in collaboration with Rob Mondavi Jr., 4th generation Napa Valley winemaker and grandson of Robert Mondavi.
As a wine lover and California resident, YOSHIKI has truly respected the Mondavi family and their long commitment to producing world class wines for many generations. From this respect, the “Y by YOSHIKI” collaboration was born in 2009.
In February 2009, YOSHIKI met with Michael Mondavi and his son, Rob Mondavi Jr. They invited YOSHIKI to their Napa Valley home to have dinner and to discuss their new collaboration wine project. They tasted many wines together that evening in order to get a sense of the wines that YOSHIKI loves and enjoys. The next day, YOSHIKI and winemaker Rob Mondavi Jr. visited the Michael Mondavi Family Estate where they tasted and blended many different wines from the different barrels of Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon in order to blend the perfect wines for YOSHIKI.
The first two wines of their new collaboration, -- “Y by YOSHIKI California Chardonnay 2008” and “Y by YOSHIKI California Cabernet Sauvignon 2008” were released in Autumn 2009 exclusively in Japan.
In the fall of 2016, YOSHIKI released his “Napa series” of wines – “Y by YOSHIKI Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2011” and “Y by YOSHIKI Napa Valley Chardonnay 2012”. The grapes for these luxury wines were sourced exclusively from selected vineyards in the Napa Valley. The reputation for these wines continued to grow and after several YOSHIKI television appearances featuring the wines, “Y by YOSHIKI Napa Valley” wines became instantly famous and quickly sold out. Since then, the “Y by YOSHIKI” wines have become more and more difficult to obtain.
YOSHIKI decided to create a new blend of “smart casual wine” so that the average consumers could enjoy his California wines. YOSHIKI and Rob went back to work and in July 2018, they released their "California series" of wines – “Y by YOSHIKI California Chardonnay 2017” and “Y by YOSHIKI California Cabernet Sauvignon 2017” both of which were sold out within 6 months.
At the end of 2018, in celebration of his 10-year partnership with Rob Mondavi Jr., YOSHIKI released his “masterpiece”, the 10th Anniversary Special Edition “Y by YOSHIKI Oakville Napa Valley 2016”.
In the summer of 2019, YOSHIKI released his new vintage of “California series”, “Y by YOSHIKI “Encore” California Chardonnay 2017” and “Y by YOSHIKI California Cabernet Sauvignon 2017”.
And now in December 2020, YOSHIKI is releasing the new vintages of both, “Y by YOSHIKI California” and “Y by YOSHIKI Oakville”, as well as a new line called “Y by YOSHIKI Russian River Valley”.
During their last blending session, YOSHIKI proposed a new challenge to Rob – to produce together a beautiful pinot noir and chardonnay from California that could stand alongside the best wines from Burgundy, France, which YOSHIKI had grown very fond of in recent years. Fortunately, Rob did not have to look far from his Napa Valley home and winery, for just over the Mayacamas mountain range lies the Russian River Valley, arguably the very best region in California to produce top quality chardonnays and pinot noirs – the Y by YOSHIKI Russian River wines were born.
The success of YOSHIKI and Rob Mondavi Jr.’s twelve year partnership has produced three core brands – “Y by YOSHIKI California”, “Y by YOSHIKI Oakville”, and “Y by YOSHIKI Russian River Valley” – and the future of these wines and their collaboration together will continue to shine bright, like the stars that they are.
Rob Mondavi Jr.
Winemaker and Co-founder of Michael Mondavi Family Estate
A fourth-generation Napa Valley winemaker, Rob Mondavi Jr.’s immersion in wine began more than 30 years ago. Born in 1971, and the son of Isabel and Michael Mondavi, Rob was raised in the Stag’s Leap district of Napa Valley and spent much of his childhood among the vines and barrels at Robert Mondavi Winery. Growing up, Rob worked in a variety of roles at the family winery, from the vineyards to the cellar to hospitality.
An entrepreneur from a young age, he started his own business hosting mountain bike tours through the Napa Valley wine country and after graduating from college, Rob worked in sales with Southern Wine & Spirits, a major distributor of fine wines.
He took a break from the wine industry and established the Napa Cigar Company in 1995, a Napa-based importer of premium cigars from the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua and the Canary Islands. Rob left his cigar business in 2000 to join the Robert Mondavi Corporation. He started as a Luxury Brands Sales Manager and was quickly promoted to Sales Director in 2001. After two years in sales, Rob returned to Napa Valley and took on the role of Director of Marketing, spearheading the Corporation’s hospitality operations and trade marketing programs. Simultaneously, Rob also spent focused periods of time under the direction of winemaker Geneviève Janssens and the winemaking and viticulture teams learning the craft of blending, tasting and vineyard processes.
In 1999 Rob, his father Michael, mother Isabel, and sister Dina, collectively purchased a plot of rugged land high on Atlas Peak and began establishing a vineyard, thereby founding Michael Mondavi Family Estate (MMFE). In 2004, Rob joined the MMFE winemaking team which allowed him to return to his first passion of growing grapes, producing wine under the Isabel Mondavi, Emblem, Animo, and “M” by Michael Mondavi labels. Rob took over the winemaking leadership in 2012 and today his wines represent a new generation of balance, and he focuses on green farming in the vineyards and modern winemaking in the cellar.
Rob is a current Board Member of Winegrowers of Napa County, and former Board Member of the Napa Valley Vintners and WildAid. An avid angler, GreenEgg guru and culinary enthusiast, Rob resides in the Napa Valley with his wife, Lydia, and their two sons.
Comments from Rob Mondavi Jr.
“YOSHIKI is a very unconventional artist and musician who broke the norms of the Japanese music world. He is a man of overwhelming presence on stage yet is so soft-spoken off stage. He is a classical pianist as well as a rock band drummer. He is a “creative chameleon” who can change his personality to adapt to any situation. Because of this quality, YOSHIKI has very unique perspectives. While he respects traditional values, he also challenges the limits to create original, new, and fresh ideas. In this sense, YOSHIKI and I are both artists, sharing the same perspective when we make wines together.”