Pinot Noir is a red wine grape variety of the species Vitis vinifera. Pinot Noir grapes are grown around the world, mostly in the cooler regions, but the grape is chiefly associated with the Burgundy region of France. Other regions that have gained a reputation for Pinot Noir include the Willamette Valley of Oregon, the Carneros, Central Coast and Russian River AVAs of California, the Walker Bay wine region of South Africa, Tasmania and Yarra Valley in Australia and the Central Otago, Martinborough and Marlborough wine regions of New Zealand. Pinot Noir is also a primary variety used in sparkling wine production in Champagne and other wine regions. It is widely considered to produce some of the finest wines in the world, but is a difficult variety to cultivate and transform into wine. The grape's tendency to produce tightly packed clusters makes it susceptible to several viticultural hazards involving rot that require diligent canopy management. The thin-skins and low levels of phenolic compounds lends Pinot to producing mostly lightly colored, medium bodied low tannin wines that can often go through dumb phases with uneven and unpredictable aging. When young, wines made from Pinot Noir tend to have red fruit aromas of cherries, raspberries and strawberries. As the wines age, Pinots have the potential to develop vegetal and "barnyard" aromas that can contribute to the complexity of the wine.
- Item #: i_202540Bottle Size: 750mlJack Niven pioneered winegrape planting with Paragon Vineyard in the Edna Valley in 1973. Not the bystander type, his wife Catharine soon after began a project that grew into what is now Baileyana Winery. In the mid 1990s, their two sons, James and John, purchased property next door, and expanded Paragon Vineyard. They designed and planted these new blocks with select clones, varieties and rootstocks specific to the site. They named this section Firepeak, in homage of the extinct volcanoes in the area, and the resulting volcanic soils.
Aromas of bright cherry, blackberry, rose petal and hints of spice burst from the glass of this bright and nicely balanced Pinot Noir. Flavors of dark fruit, blueberry, mocha and cola flavors along with soft supple tannins create a beautiful finish.
- Item #: i_202640Bottle Size: 750mlFor Pinot Noir, the cream really does rise to the top. Pinot Noir is such a transparent grape that any faults or follies in the growing and winemaking process are amplified in the finished wine. Therefore, when we find a Pinot Noir that shines above the rest, and at the same time doesn't break the bank, we wouldn't be doing our jobs if we didn't let you know about it. And let us say, we've done our homework on this one to bring you a fantastic buy!
Bishop's Peak wines are handcrafted by Talley Vineyards to capture the varietal and regional diversity of San Luis Obispo County. The grapes for the wines come from small vineyard sites in Arroyo Grande Valley, Edna Valley, and Paso Robles. Some of these sites are owned by the Talley family while others are owned by growers who share the family's commitment to quality. This wine shows many of the similar qualities, nuances, and complexities of Pinot Noirs that sell for more than $25 a bottle, but seeing at this sells under $15 a bottle, this is one heck of a bargain!
- Item #: i_274430Bottle Size: 750mlThis is a blend of 40% Syrah, 35% Mourvedre, 19% Grenache, 4% Carignan, and 2% Tannat. Russel writes his tasting notes like a story, and he writes: "You never thought you'd get this far, but the wood-paneled bar with neon-lit signs has dissolved into your apartment balcony, where she's hungry and waiting. Frying up a grilled cheese in the kitchen you realize you're not kids anymore, so you're trying to channel your inner Thomas Keller, chopping fresh rosemary and sage, sizzling bacon, spreading pepper jelly. She hand-rolls a cigarette as you split the sandwich. Miles away, thunder rolls. The air turns earthy and sweet. Let it fill the space between you until the rain begins."
- Item #: i_236520Bottle Size: 750mlWith an initial spiced marionberry quality, the wine unwinds slowly into notes of cedar plank and delicate rose petal, framed by fine, dusty tannins. The palate is expressive with tangy notes of sarsaparilla, red currant, and warm baking spice.
- Item #: i_236510Bottle Size: 750mlBursting from the glass are notes of cranberry and juicy mulberry, followed by sarsaparilla and freshly-grated nutmeg. Bright, crisp acidity frames youthful avors of pomegranate, red cherry and sandalwood with a hint of the classic Laetitia spice. Although very approachable now, this wine will age gracefully for years to come. Look to pair with cedar-plank salmon and roasted mushrooms with herbs and goat cheese.