Buena Vista Pinot Noir Ramal Vineyard Estate 2006
Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
The focus of the Buena Vista Estate Vineyard Series is our remarkable 700-acre Estate vineyard in the heart of Carneros. Set along a south-facing hillside overlooking the San Francisco Bay, this breathtaking property has more than 100 blocks delineated by geology and topography.
The 2006 Ramal Vineyard Pinot Noir is deep purple in color with aromas of blackberry, mocha, toast, damp earth, cardamom and roasted nuts. It continues with a spicy entry and flavors of black cherry, cocoa, broad sweet tannins and cherry liqueur. The wine lingers with a long rich finish balanced by great acid and fruit definition. The Dijon clones exhibit more structure than the Swan Selection and lend to darker black fruit characteristics. Bold enough to pair with a roasted rosemary rack of lamb along with new spring red potatoes.
Wine Enthusiast - "Serious white wine. Dense and full-bodied, it's incredibly lush in tropical fruit and apricot flavors. Entirely dry, it shows a honey-sweet layer that’s crisp and well-balanced."
Connoisseurs' Guide - "Complex aromas of roasted grains, wood smoke, ripe apples and subtle hints of crème brûlée are joined in aromas that are both deep and far-ranging. The wine is full in body and somewhat on the soft side, but that softness is never overdone, and it stays in balance while allowing easy access to its deep personality even at this youthful juncture. Less in need of aging that many of our other top picks, this wine will be fully enjoyable today and should hold up well for a few years yet."
Buena Vista Winery
Founded in 1857 as California's first premium winery, Buena Vista, under the direction of winemaker Jeff Stewart, is a leader in cool-climate Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Merlot and Syrah. Straddling Sonoma County in the southern end of the Carneros appellation, the 523-acre Ramal Vineyard Estate is broken up into 167 small blocks, with 21 different clones of Chardonnay and 13 different clones of Pinot Noir, and is set along rolling south-facing hillsides overlooking the San Pablo Bay. The Ramal Vineyard is the crown jewel of all Carneros.
Most winemakers will agree that cool-climate wines like Pinot Noir are the most difficult to produce. And most will agree that Jeff Stewart does so with unparalleled success. Jeff comes to Buena Vista with over 15 years of achievement in cool-climate viticulture and his focus on gentle handling of the grapes and temperature moderation produces wines with complexity, character and depth. View all Buena Vista Winery 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.