With Thanksgiving behind us, and the leftover turkey soup eaten or consigned to the freezer, I really felt in need of some lighter wines as a kind of cleanse from the rich and wonderful food and wines I've been enjoying. So, leaping out at me from the vast array of samples I have in the cellar, were four tempting Pinots I have been meaning to try for some time: two from France, one from Italy, and one from Tasmania. I was just blown away by all of them. They are superb wines and all really great value, which I just love to find.
One of the of the things I love about Pinot Noir is its ability to convey the story of the land where it is grown, perhaps more than any other grape. Last month, we spent the day digging pits and analyzing the terroir of a new Pinot vineyard in Oregon for our Rose and Arrow wines. Moulin de Gassac Pinot Noir 2020 ($16) from the famed Mas de Daumas Gassac in the Languedoc. Wow, this just a great little wine! Bright and full of cherries and red apples with a touch of baking spices and a fresh saltiness on the finish. It speaks of a crisp winter’s day in the South of France where it is from, with the sun shining on you through the window, and a steaming plate of spicy merguez sausages in front of you on the table.
Pojer e Sandri Pinot Nero 2019 ($27) from northern Italy. This Pinot is laced with fresh, wild strawberries, black tea, and hibiscus flowers. We’ve featured the Muller Thurgau from this great producer, and this Pinot has the same wonderful mineral tension we loved in that one. Duck confit salad is just crying out to be had with this.
David Trouselle Santenay Rouge 2018 ($33). This beautiful Pinot is from the village of Santenay in Burgundy. It is grown on a tiny parcel of ½ acre, which makes only about 120-150 cases of wine each year. The vineyard is higher up the hill from the great Grand Crus, but with global warming, these cooler vineyards which used to struggle with ripeness are now coming into their sweet spot. With dusky plums, cherries, and a beautiful ethereal mouthfeel, this is a really complete wine. Drink with a slow braise of beef on a brisk winter night.
Last but not least, a wine that flew off the shelves last year and has finally arrived in the U.S. in the new vintage: Devil's Corner Resolution Pinot Noir 2018 ($25) from Tasmania. Not to stick my proverbial neck out too far, but I think Tasmania is a going to be a future hot spot for world-class Pinots. This is the plushest in the palate of this group, but it has a super framework of acids and tannins to support the lovely fruit as it glides down your throat. Think of a well fitted suit or dress that just makes you look and feel great. If you have ever had a Croque Monsieur, that wonderful French snack with ham and gruyere sauce inside crusty bread, then for this wine, add a layer of caramelized mushrooms on your ham. Eat it at lunch or teatime with a glass of this and a fire crackling in the grate.
VISIT OUR POP UP AT THE MUIR BEACH WINTER FAIR!
This Saturday, you can find us at the Muir Beach Winter Fair where we’ll be selling the homemade chutneys and preserves that we make from our ranch in Big Sur. We’ll also be taking orders for our holiday hampers and wine gifts, which are wonderful presents for the food and wine lovers in your life.
Date: Saturday, December 4
Time: 10AM - 5PM
Place: Muir Beach Community Center, 19 Seacape Dr, Muir Beach, CA 94965
In the days since Thanksgiving, our family has been bottling chutneys and making crafts from morning 'til night to share at the Muir Beach Winter Fair, one of our favorite community events of the year. Come support local craftsman and artists, enjoy live music, and lift your spirits with hot mulled wine and other seasonal goodies. We hope to see you there!