We started off with the ’08 Belle Glos “Clark and Telephone Vineyard” Pinot Noir from Santa Maria Valley (37.95/btl $34.15/btl. mixed case) and what a way to start. It is ripe and lush with strawberry fruit and hints of tea and spice keeps you begging for another sip. It’s as racy as Pinot Noir can be, without going over the top. Let’s just say this one shows off a little more leg than its two sisters.
Next we swirled the ’08 Belle Glos “Taylor Lane Vineyard” Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast (37.95/btl $34.15/btl. mixed case). Like cherry pie in a glass, this one was super fruity. We were all amazed by its deep dark color, coming from the cooler climate Sonoma Coast appellation. As it turns out, winemaker Joseph Wagner (son of Caymus founder Charles Wagner) started using a special trellis system that allows better sun exposure to gain more tannins and thus darker colored wine. This is hands down one of the most intense Sonoma coast Pinot Noirs I’ve ever tasted.
Last, but certainly not least, is the ’08 Belle Glos “Las Alturas Vineyard” Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands (37.95/btl $34.15/btl. mixed case). I’ve been a fan of Santa Lucia Pinot for sometime now. Those of you who have had the pleasure of sipping Pinot Noir from “Garys’ Vineyard” or the “Pisoni Vineyard” know exactly what I am talking about. The soil and climate in this region give the wines a more classic Burgundian expression of terroir than any other California Pinot appellation. The Las Alturas vineyard (which neighbors Garys’ Vineyard) is really coming into maturity. Earth and minerality take center stage with fruit and barrel spice bringing it all together into a luxurious harmony. This was my favorite of the three, though I will have a few bottles of all three in my cellar.
All in all, this was a very impressive line-up that had all of us clamoring with excitement. The spring catalog is in the mail now, so when it hits your mailbox, be sure to take a look at the bottom of page 6.
--Stefan Matulich, Sales Director & Spirits Buyer