Big Basin Lester Family Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014 Front Label
Big Basin Lester Family Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014 Front LabelBig Basin Lester Family Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014 Front Bottle Shot

Big Basin Lester Family Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014

  • WE95
  • RP91
750ML / 13% ABV
Other Vintages
  • V94
  • WE93
  • JD93
  • W&S92
  • WE94
  • WE95
  • JD95
  • WW93
  • JD94
  • WE93
  • RP92
  • W&S91
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750ML / 13% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Lester is always one of Big Basin's deepest, most expressive Pinot Noirs. Cluster and berry size of Lester fruit is always small, which contributes to the wine's consistently bold character. The vineyard is located in the hills of Corallitos only three miles from the cooling fog of Monterey Bay.

Their winemaking approach with Pinot Noir has been evolving each vintage by increasing use of whole clusters. The near perfect growing conditions of 2014 presented perfectly ripened stems which they included during fermentation to enhance the aromatics, structure and aging potential of the wine. The 2014 Lester Pinot Noir was fermented with 100% whole clusters.

Pair this Pinot Noir with shiitake mushroom risotto and you'll never forget that meal!

Critical Acclaim

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WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
Winemaker Bradley Brown manages to capture all of the redwood forest-like spice of this region in his lithe bottlings. This one offers fresh pomegranate and rose petal on the nose, plus woody touches of sandalwood and cedar. Bright acidity kicks off the sip, dropping into pencil shavings, thyme and cola, with dried raspberry fruit that runs from end to end.
RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2014 Pinot Noir Lester Family Vineyard reveals a vibrant ruby color to go with lots of spice-box, garrigue, licorice and both red and black fruits. Like the other cuvées here, it saw 100% whole clusters followed by 15 months in 25% new French oak. Comparatively, the stems are better integrated here, and it has a sappy, medium-bodied, structured feel on the palate that will benefit from short-term cellaring and evolve gracefully for a decade or more.
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Big Basin

Big Basin

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Big Basin, California
Big Basin Winery Video

Located in the heart of the Santa Cruz Mountains, Big Basin Vineyards is terraced into a steep hillside first planted to grape vines by French immigrants over 100 years ago. Their winery and the vineyards they work with are located at sites in the Santa Cruz and Gabilan Mountains that are as beautiful as they are exceptional for grape growing. They farm organically and practice minimal-intervention winemaking with the goal of producing wines that transparently and authentically express site and variety. 

Big Basin believes that their choice of vineyards, picking at the right time to retain intensity and elegance, and minimalistic winemaking practices are the keys to producing more aromatic and ethereal wines - new world wines with old world soul. Owner and winemaker Bradley Brown has been on a 20 year quest to produce beautiful and soulful wines. Winemaker Blake Yarger joined the team in 2017 and together they are always fine tuning practices to more transparently express the vineyards.

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A rugged and topographically diverse cool-climate appellation with a rich history, the Santa Cruz Mountains AVA stretches from Half Moon Bay, just south of San Francisco, to the northern border of Monterey County. Elevations range from 800 feet to upwards of 3,000 and microclimates vary substantially depending on which side of the mountains the vineyards lie; cool ocean winds and fog play an important role here. This can be a challenging region in which to grow grapes, but it is well worth the effort. Santa Cruz Mountains wines are noted for balanced acidity levels, often showing great aging potential. Wine has been made here since the 1800s, most notably from the legendary Ridge Vineyards, whose Monte Bello vineyard garners international admiration.

Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon are the stars of this region, while Merlot and Zinfandel also perform quite well. Organic and sustainable vineyard practices are becoming increasingly common.

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Thin-skinned, finicky and temperamental, Pinot Noir is also one of the most rewarding grapes to grow and remains a labor of love for some of the greatest vignerons in Burgundy. Fairly adaptable but highly reflective of the environment in which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate and requires low yields to achieve high quality. Outside of France, outstanding examples come from in Oregon, California and throughout specific locations in wine-producing world. Somm Secret—André Tchelistcheff, California’s most influential post-Prohibition winemaker decidedly stayed away from the grape, claiming “God made Cabernet. The Devil made Pinot Noir.”

ALWBGLESTERPNSC14_2014 Item# 166347

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