From one of the coolest California AVA’s comes this Pinot Noir that is medium ruby in the glass with thick watery legs. The nose is medium intensity with aromas of steeped strawberry, red plum, orange peel, baking spices, black raspberry and rosewater. The palate is dry with high acidity, medium, well ingrained tannins, a medium body and lovely flavors of dark red fruit, oak influence by way of orange peel and baking spices and some freshness from the rose component. The wine is very silky, balanced and slippery with a medium length finish. I like this wine, even though it’s not my style of Pinot. 91 points for this $60 beauty makes it a 5 star effort that I am pairing with beer-can Chicken and sautéed spinach. Drink till 2030. Salut….
My buddy Keef and I sat out on the patio last night and enjoyed this Cali Pinot. It was medium ruby in the glass with a medium intensity nose of funk, steeped cherry, lavender and blueberry. Definitely not your typical Pinot nose, Old or New world. The palate is more raspberry and cherry. The funk does persist on the mid palate though. The acidity is medium (-), and there are very fine grained tannins lurking. The lack of primal fruit and the overwhelming funk is a bit strange to me. It’s a very young wine to have started it’s transition by shedding primary fruit. 87 points from me and 2 stars for this $56 bottling. Salut….
Very pale purple and completely see-through. Why is this important? Pinot Noir has several unique traits- it is a seductive grape that does not need extraction. It treats tannins completely different to other varietals in my opinion. It’s charm and elegance come from it’s fragility on the vine, a very difficult grape to cultivate well. It takes on one of two personalities: Old World with funk, earthiness and mainly cherry, whereas New World styles give more strawberry, a fruit forward style that appeals to many yet doesn’t quite allow for tertiary development. I like both styles but prefer Old World.
This one is a New World child with fresh strawberries, some bing cherry and cinnamon? Not sure, but it is intriguing. The initial taste confirms my New World suspicions. Strawberry shortcake, vanilla bean and red currants. A touch of acidity tidy the package up nicely and let the tannins introduce themselves on the mid palate. If you have followed me for a while you will know that I had a hard time discerning tannic structure in Pinots. I’m learning and getting better. Thanks for asking.
This wine has a gorgeous mouthfeel, the dryness of the tannins is very gentle and the acidity is very mild, not cutting but definitely present. The finish is mid-length and continues the strawberry theme with some acai berry notes. The 14.5% alcohol is very well disguised but will bode well for this wine in the cellar. I believe it has some potential and will drink well until 2025. I would pair it with roast cornish hens, perhaps a grilled pork chop with apple stuffing. 90 points and 3 stars for this $27 bottle. Salut….
I was lucky to snag 4 bottles of this delightful Pinot Noir. With a stonking huge smoked Turkey drumstick, some roasted potatoes, beets and a dollop of Scharfer Senf (German hot mustard) I was all set to get busy with this 6 year old wine. The pairing was near perfect. A very pretty light purple in the glass as expected, I had some cork crumbles that I needed to sort out. On the nose; strawberry, cherry, pepper and oak shavings. Unfortunately I could also whiff the 14.2% alcohol. Never mind, the initial attack on the palate was delicious. Typical of New World Pinot Noir, yet somewhat reserved. Cherries Jubilee meets strawberry swirl. Delicious undertones of white pepper and a touch of vanilla came through. I prefer Old World Burgundian style Pinots, but every once in a while New World stuff excites me like this one. I think it has to do with the finesse versus the new stuff with the ‘in-your-face’ fruit.
If you have read my other Pinot posts, you will know that I have a hard time discerning the tannins in this varietal. I did notice a decent acidity that was focused. With 6 years of age, it is drinking beautifully and I reckon it will last another 4. Pricey at $50, you get what you pay for. Pinot is never cheap if it is any good (think Burgundy). It is a very finnicky grape that challenges every winemaker. I get it… So, I reckon it is a 91 pointer, and worthy of 4 stars. Glad I still have 3 more and will look for a different pairing next time. Salut….