More Great Reviews!

We're very excited to share the following reviews of our 2009 pinot noirs from the 12/15/10 issue of the esteemed PinotFile newsletter:  


2009 Bruliam Hayle y Vineyard Anderson Valley Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., pH 3.73, $52. Unusual wine in that it is 100% clone 114.  This Pinot is the most feminine, the angel of the lineup.  Very pretty perfume of cherries, strawberries and spice echoed in the flavors on the palate. Soft, forward and charming, with a spark of acidity to enliven the cherry driven finish.  Very Good.


 2009 Bruliam Doctor’s Vineyard Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

14.3% alc., pH 3.55, $52. Aged for 11 months in 50% new Franch oak from Remond. Clones 828, 777, 667 and Swan.   This is a crowd pleaser and a little more substantial tease with its exuberant scent of black cherries, dark red berries and forest floor.  The tasty fruit is well robed in suede tannins creating an invitingly smooth mouth feel. Like eating kirsch-soaked cherries on a velvet blanket.  Very Good.


2009 Bruliam Split Rock Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 

14.3% alc., pH 3.82, $52. Fermented as 100% clone 667 with small amounts of clones 115 and 828 added at blending.   Rugged and muscular, this wine offers a bold array of earth-kissed, fleshy and savory dark stone fruits.  As is typical for clone 667, the color is strong and intense and the tannins are firm and angular.  Will appeal to fruit hedonists.  Put this one in your cellar while you drink the Hayley and Doctor’s wines.  Good.


Rusty Gaffney, M.D. the author of PinotFile (aka "The Prince of Pinot") also included a very flattering profile of Bruliam Wines in the newsletter.  We've posted what he wrote below, or you can see it online here:

 Two novice, but enthusiastic winemakers, Kerith and Brian Overstreet, debuted their label beginning with the 2008 vintage.  I have never seen a couple having so much fun in launching a wine business.  Brian is the CEO of fast-growing Sagient Research Systems, a leading provider of proprietary independent research and data services to the financial and institutional investment communities, and Kerith, a former surgical pathologist, manages the family of three kids.  Their occupational success allows them to donate 100% of their profits from their wine sales to the Overstreet Family Foundation which has multiple charitable beneficiaries.

Their name and label is a colorful play on The Periodic Table of Elements (remember your high school chemistry?).  Kerith and Brian consider wine elemental to their life. Bruliam is an amalgamation of the names of the three young Overstreet children.

The inaugural release from Bruliam was a 2008 Doctor’s Vineyard Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir which was crafted at Crushpad in San Francisco (previously reviewed -  For 2010, production was moved to Mauritson Winery on Dry Creek Road in Healdsburg.  The Overstreets conveniently have a second home in Healdsburg so they have easy access to the Mauritson production facility.  Winemaker Clay Mauritson acts as the consultant for Bruliam wines.  He is an accomplished vintner who has made distinguished wines under his Mauritson Winery, Rockpile and Loam brands and has teamed with restaurateur Charlie Palmer to craft the Charlie Clay and Duelist brands of Pinot Noir.  Kerith recently worked harvest at Mauritson and her amorous escapades with the heartbreak grape are chronicled in a video posted on the winery’s website.

I recently attended a lively release party for the 2009 vintage Bruliam wines at Cucina Urbana Restaurant in San Diego.  I sampled the three Bruliam Pinot Noirs offered and was impressed by the easy approachability of the Anderson Valley and Santa Lucia Highlands bottlings.  All three wines have much to recommend. The wines are sold through a mailing list at

Bruliam wines are made in traditional fashion.  After hand sorting and de-stemming and a 5-day cold soak, whole berry inoculated fermentation is carried out.  The barreled wine is 70%-90% free-run. Malolactic fermentation is initiated with inoculated yeast and the wine is aged for 11 months in 33% to 50% new French oak barrels.  The wines were bottle aged 3 months before release on December 5, 2010.

The Bruliam blog is penned by both Brian and Kerith and is one of my favorite reads on the internet.  My wife has curiously checked on me a few times after hearing me burst out laughing while reading the blog.