In the fall of 2001, Russian Hill released its first vineyard designated Pinot noir, the 1999 Leras Vineyard. The success of this vineyard must be attributed to Nick Leras who comes from a family of pioneer Russian River Valley grape growers who were amongst the first to plant grapes in this region.
Nick combines his knowledge, steeped in tradition, with an openness to that which is new to meet the specific requirements of each vineyard. The vines of Leras Vineyard are dry farmed and are trellised by a modified Scott-Henry system. The split canopy provides the vines the correct balance for the fertile soil and balanced vines ultimately produce balanced wines. Lack of irrigation further concentrates the grapes and adds to the depth of flavors of the wine from this vineyard.