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Pinot Noir

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2010 Pinot Noir by Ranch 32 Monterey County

Monday, January 21st, 2013

Vintage: 2010
Type: Pinot Noir
Country: USA — California — Monterey

2010 Pinot Noir by Ranch 32

I was recently in sunny, warm San Diego, where I was working in a conference hotel during the day and discovering the city at night. January evenings were surprisingly balmy, which allowed me to walk all around the Gaslamp Quarter looking for interesting restaurants and wine bars.

At the intersection of Market Street and 12th Avenue, you will find a new sushi and wine lounge called Infuzon. Open since mid-2012, this restaurant fuses the art of Japanese sushi rolls with the sophisticated (but relaxing!) atmosphere of a wine bar.

The owner of Infuzon recommended Ranch 32’s 2010 Pinot Noir to accompany his abundant selection of sushi rolls. Ranch 32 is considered a “local vineyard.”

NB: my Japanese boss from Austria always insisted that sushi is best accompanied by fruitier red wines … and he is always right.

This wine on its own might be viewed as weak and lacking in character; however, when specifically paired with Japanese sushi and sashimi, I think it really enhances the dining experience. It won’t be overbearing and drown out the subtle flavours of ginger, radish, avocado, etc. that is found in and beside sushi rolls.

Technical Review

Appearance

Clear, medium ruby.

Nose
Clean, medium aromas of sour cherries and non-specified, unripe dark-skinned berries.

Palate
Dry, medium acidity, low tannins, with light body.

Flavour characteristics of sour cherries and some floral hints.

Medium alcohol and medium length.

Conclusion
Good. Drink now; not meant for ageing. High-priced, especially if sourcing from outside the USA.

Brancott Vineyards Pinot Noir Terraces 2009

Friday, May 25th, 2012

Vintage: 2009
Type: Pinot Noir
Country: New Zealand – Marlborough

This is another wine that I sampled at the Tesco Wine Fair 2011 and I just had to buy a case. At first sip, I fell in love with the Burgundy-style wine. This is Brancott’s 7th iteration off this flagship T wine (its predecessor won several Silver medals at international competitions) and it does not disappoint. Enjoy this wine with a rich meal, like a creamy mushroom risotto with venison sausages. That would be excellent!

Technical Review

Appearance
Clear, deep Garnet.

Nose

Clean, pronounced aromas of cherry, vanilla and spice. Some plummy notes.

Palate

Medium-high acidity. Light tannins. Medium body. Flavour characteristics of ripe cherries and hints of mocha.

Conclusion
Very Good.

Ocean’s Ridge Pinot Noir 2008

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

Vintage: 2008
Type: Pinot Noir
Country: New Zealand – Marlborough

This was a gift presented by friends from New Zealand and Australia. New Zealand is a region that has Pinot Noirs rivalling those of Burgundy … this one lives up to the reputation. It is a light, lively, fruity red wine that goes well with summer dinners. It is 13% alcohol and easy to drink quickly, so slow down and savour it with your food. This wine was paired with Italian roasted tomato sausages and mushroom tortellini in a creamy basil sauce.

Technical Review

Appearance
Clear, pale Ruby.
Nose
Clean, medium. Characteristics of strawberries and cherry. Some sweet spice, such as Cinnamon.

Palate
Medium acidity. Low tannin. Flavours of red fruit, although not complex. Medium body. Medium length finish.
Conclusion
Very good.

Michel Sarrazin et Fils – 1re Cru 2005

Sunday, January 15th, 2012

Vintage: 2005
Type: Pinot Noir
Country: France-Burgundy-Givry

This wine comes from a good lineage: it is classified as a Premier Cru from one of the Grands Vins de Bourgogne (a particular, quality plot of land). I had the pleasure of trying the last bit at the end of the work day. This is a very easy drinking wine that would complement a light, spring or autumnal dinner.

Technical Analysis

Appearance:  Clear, medium Ruby.

Nose: Medium and clean. Characteristics of red fruits such as strawberries and cherries. Hints of oak and vanilla. Some earthiness and truffle-like aromas.

Palate: High acidity, medium tannin. Flavour characteristics of red fruits and oak. Medium finish.

Conclusion: Very good.

Cedar Creek Pinot Noir Platinum Reserve 2006

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

Vintage: 2006
Type: Pinot Noir
Country: Canada-Okanagan Valley

Pungent when opened but opens beautifully after an hour or so. The colour is bright and slightly transparent (not unusual for a 2006!). This wine bursts with dark berry flavours and makes the mouth water. Although on the sweet side, this wine leave a tannic after-taste on the tongue.

Mt Boucherie – Pinot Noir

Saturday, December 5th, 2009

Vintage: 2005
Type: Pinot Noir
Country: Canada – Okanagan Valley

This bottle was a wedding gift from the Hotel that we stayed at. It’s a good wine, with nice colour and a decent bouquet (for a Pinot Noir). The flavour is a bit light in complexity for my palette, but it would be a good summer wine to enjoy.