Saintsbury Brown Ranch Pinot Noir 2007
Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
To produce a single vineyard wine you should be convinced the vineyard has something unique and identifiable to offer. It should be a vineyard that will yield a wine whose intensity and personality you are unable to obtain in your other wines. We knew this about our Brown Ranch after the first harvest of its Pinot Noir grapes in 1995.
There are eight lots that are separately fermented, aged and assessed. And while each has its unique qualities due to clonal, rootstock and terroir differences, there is a consistent thread running though these Brown Ranch pinot noirs. The ranch has a combination of typical Carneros clay loams and cobbly clay loams as well as some volcanic soil types on steeper hillsides.
Wines from this vineyard show more rich earthiness and black fruit than the more red-fruit character of other lots in our cellar. A dark fruit intensity with stunning persistence is a hallmark of this wine. Less than a third of the pinot noir from this, our best vineyard site, goes into the Brown Ranch Pinot Noir each year. It is packaged into six-bottle boxes with a package design that pays tribute to George Saintsbury.
Burghound.com - "Here the somber red berry fruit, spice and menthol suffused nose is notably ripe yet somber with a supple and appealingly textured mouth feel to the round and delicious flavors that possess excellent depth and length with very little natural sweetness though there is a trace of warmth."
Saintsbury specializes in Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The Chardonnay is fermented and aged in barrels coopered in Burgundy. Three styles of Pinot Noir are produced: "Garnet" is a fresh, lively wine full of cherry and raspberry fruit; the wine simply called Carneros Pinot Noir is a more classic rendition; and the Reserve Pinot Noir is the richest and most fully flavored of the vintage. View all Saintsbury Wines
About CarnerosView a map of Carneros wineries
Technically a part of Napa Valley, the Carneros region straddles both Sonoma & Napa counties. It's the Napa region closest to the San Francisco peninsula and the San Pablo Bay, which is instrumental in controlling the climate of the area. The winds from the San Pablo bay create a cool weather pattern ideal for growing Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
Notable FactsBoth Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from Carneros are delicate, yet complex, with firm structure and acidity. And while the pair are the most popular varieties of the region, some winemakers have branched out, particularly with Syrah. The cool climate Syrah of Carneros is well structured and stylistically similar to Syrah from the Northern Rhone, though often fuller-bodied.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
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