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Bernardus Rosella's Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011

  • WW93
  • WE92
  • RP91
750ML / 14.2% ABV
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4.7 6 Ratings
750ML / 14.2% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The Santa Lucia Highlands are known as one of the premier Pinot Noir appellations of the world. One reason for this lofty reputation is Rosella's Vineyard. Gary Franscioni planted his home ranch, named for his lovely wife, in the heart of the Highlands. Gary's home vineyard is planted with a selection of the best available Pinot Noir clones and farmed with unparalleled passion and attention to detail. We at Bernardus are fortunate to have access to three small blocks: 2 planted with clone 777, and the third with the celebrated Pisoni clone.

Each block is individually monitored for ripeness in order to hand-pick each clone at its perfect ripeness level. The grapes are sorted at the winery and fermented in small individual fermenters using specially selected yeasts. Once fermentation and pressing are complete, each lot is aged separately for 10 months in the finest French oak barrels. Each barrel is evaluated individually and the final selection is made through a lengthy series of tasting trials.

The robe of our 2011 Rosella's is a deep crimson. On the nose we find aromas of candied red cherry fruits along with notes of oak and spice. The palate is very full and complex, exuding flavors of red cherry and berries, accented by notes of cinnamon and nutmeg. This is a beautifully intense wine that will age wonderfully for many years to come.

Critical Acclaim

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WW 93
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
One of America's most serious and important Pinot Noirs that seems to under the radar screen, the 2011 Bernardus Rosella's is super fine in so many ways. Pure with its wild strawberries and tongue awaking chalkiness, this wine delivers. If you love fine dining, then this the wine for you. It just get the taste buds going. (Best Served: 2014-2021)
WE 92
Wine Enthusiast
This is a really good Pinot Noir that will gain traction in the cellar. The cool vintage conditions show in the acidity and lean framework, but the California sun triumphs with flavors of ripe sour cherries with suggestions of mushrooms and minerals. Dry and complex, it should be better after 2016.
RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
More serious, edgy and firm, with red and black currants, underbrush and spice aromas and flavors, the 2011 Pinot Noir Rosella’s Vineyard is one of the richer Pinots from this vineyard. Medium to full-bodied, rich and supple, with a great mid-palate, it has plenty of texture, all the while staying beautifully focused. It should have upwards of a decade of longevity. Drink 2014-2021.
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Bernardus

Bernardus

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Bernardus, California
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The focus of Bernardus is to create wines that flatter the palate and stimulate the imagination. Our Marinus Estate Bordeaux-style red wine is the centerpiece of owner Ben Pon's dream. It is complemented by Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc from cool coastal climate vineyards. We also offer limited bottlings of small production and vineyard designate wines, which are available exclusively through the tasting room and wine club... taste a dream.

Pon appreciates wine as an art-- a form of art that transcends the ordinary. His dream with Bernardus is to make a red wine equal to the finest from Bordeaux. To achieve this purpose, Ben, a Dutchman who could have planted vineyards anywhere in the world, has chosen the Carmel Valley for his estate vineyards and winery. Since the early 1970's, there has been a growing awareness of the outstanding potential for Bordeaux varieties from this new viticultural appellation. The Bernardus estate vineyards of Marinus and Featherbow Ranch are located in the Cachagua region of the Carmel Valley. We have been told that Cachagua is the Spanish word Native Americans used for deep or hidden water. It has been said that Native Americans believed that all things in nature were sacred and interrelated. Their respect for balance in nature is carried on in the vineyards of Bernardus. More than 300 live oaks have been preserved to thrive among carefully planted vines.

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Perhaps the most highly regarded appellation within Monterey County, Santa Lucia Highlands AVA benefits from a combination of warm morning sunshine and brisk afternoon breezes, allowing grapes to ripen slowly and fully. The result is concentrated, flavorful wines that retain their natural acidity. Wineries here do not shy away from innovation, and place a high priority on sustainable viticultural practices.

The climatic conditions here are perfectly suited to the production of ripe, rich Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. These Burgundian varieties dominate an overwhelming percentage of plantings, though growers have also found success with Syrah, Riesling and Pinot Gris.

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One of the most finicky yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is a labor of love for many. However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. In fact, it is the only red variety permitted in Burgundy. Highly reflective of its terroir, Pinot Noir prefers calcareous soils and a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality and demands a lot of attention in the vineyard and winery. It retains even more glory as an important component of Champagne as well as on its own in France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions. This sensational grape enjoys immense international success, most notably growing in Oregon, California and New Zealand with smaller amounts in Chile, Germany (as Spätburgunder) and Italy (as Pinot Nero).

Tasting Notes for Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is a dry red wine, typically diominated by red fruit—strawberry, raspberry and cherry with some heftier styles showing black plum and more delicate styles of Pinot giving citrus qualities. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and a lively acidity. With age Pinot Noir can develop hauntingly alluring characteristics of fresh earth, savory spice and dried fruit.

Perfect Food Pairings for Pinot Noir

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of salmon or texture of tuna but its mild mannered tannins give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry: chicken, quail and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, Pinot noir has proven it isn’t afraid of beef. California examples work splendidly well with barbecue and Pinot Noir is also vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secrets for Pinot Noir

For administrative purposes, the region of Beaujolais is often included in Burgundy. But it is extremely different in terms of topography, soil and climate, and the important red grape here is ultimately Gamay, not Pinot noir. Truth be told, there is a tiny amount of Gamay sprinkled around the outlying parts of Burgundy (mainly in Maconnais) but it isn’t allowed with any great significance and certainly not in any Village or Cru level wines. So "red Burgundy" still necessarily refers to Pinot noir.

SWS357701_2011 Item# 131978

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