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This Mendelson Pinot Gris is our new world version of the Russian Czar's favorite wine. When we first tasted a hundred year old bottle in the cellars of Massandra in Russia in 1987, our quest began. Our Pinot Gris grapes are grown in the Napa Valley, both at our home vineyard in the Oak Knoll district and in the cool Carneros region. The wine is fermented in small French oak barrels and fortified with alambic pot distilled brandy. We strive for 16% alcohol and 13-15% residual sugar, which we have found to be ideal for short-term enjoyment and long-term aging. The wine is bottled in the spring following harvest to preserve the fresh fruit flavors.
This 1998 Pinot Gris has a brilliant copper color. The aromas are honeyed peach and honeydew melon with hints of rose petals and caramel. Ripe peach flavors on the front of the palate change to golden delicious apples mid-palate, with a touch of nutmeg spiciness. The wine is well balanced creamy and elegant, with a velvety finish.
We like the Pinot Gris in the morning poured over grapefruit. We like to sip it as an aperitif at dusk, while munching on pecans and watching the Napa Valley sunsets. We particularly like it with our favorite spicy foods (Indian, Thai, and Chinese). And we love it with desserts, especially fruit and nut tarts, bittersweet chocolates and caramels. Serve slightly chilled.
The Mendelson Dessert wines are handcrafted gems produced in small lots in Napa, California from the finest California vineyards. Select bunches of late harvest grapes are hand-picked in late fall each year, fermented in small oak barrels then lightly fortified with the finest alembic pot-distilled brandy. The result is a finished wine that’s between 15 and 16 percent alcohol. The Mendelson Pinot Gris and Muscat Canelli are created following the tradition of the Russian Czars who made these dessert wines famous as part of the Massandra Collection.
It's hard not to think of Napa Valley when thinking of California wines. The region is, after all, the one that brought world recognition to California wine making. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard...Read More About Napa Valley
Pinot Gris/Grigio(PEE-noh gree/GREE-jee-oh) While Pinot Grigio is in fact the same grape as Pinot Gris (just the Italian take on it), the differences of wine they create can be immense. Pinot Gris' most popular and successful region is Alsace, France, an area of the country that actually puts the name of the grape on the label. Pinot Grigio is the Italian version of the grape,...Read More About Pinot Gris/Grigio
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