Byron John Sebastiano Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014 Front Label
Byron John Sebastiano Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014 Front LabelByron John Sebastiano Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014  Front Bottle Shot

Byron John Sebastiano Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014

  • WE94
  • JD91
  • RP90
750ML / 14.4% ABV
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  • JD91
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3.8 6 Ratings
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3.8 6 Ratings
750ML / 14.4% ABV

Winemaker Notes

One of Sta. Rita Hills’ newest and most exciting plantings, this vineyard sits along the eastern border of the AVA. The site’s 100-acres benefit from a myriad of exposures and marine influences, which together with premium clonal selection and high-density planting, produce exceptionally small clusters and berries. The wine exhibits dark plum and dark cherry with brown spice and hints of saltiness. The core is of black fruit with a finish that is long and smokey with hints of brown spice.


Critical Acclaim

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WE 94
Wine Enthusiast
There's a great deal of sagebrush on the nose of this bottling from a vineyard in the eastern Sta. Rita Hills, along with red cherry, pencil lead and sandalwood. Dark cherry and cranberry flavors power the palate, the fruit wrapped in hickory smoke. Thyme flavors carry into the tannic finish.
JD 91
Jeb Dunnuck
Spice, caramelized cherries, cedar and currants all emerge from the glass of the 2014 Pinot Noir John Sebastiano Vineyard, and it's a medium-bodied, elegant, nicely textured effort that has bright acidity and plenty of cut. It will be even better with a year of bottle age, and keep for a decade. This was only partially destemmed and saw 16 months in 40% new French oak.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Black cherries, ground herbs and hints of oak flow from the translucent ruby colored 2014 Pinot Noir John Sebastiano. Medium-bodied, lively and textured on the palate, with nicely integrated acidity, it comes from a vineyard in the Sta. Rita Hills and Pommard clones that were planted in the 1970s. Fermented with one-third whole clusters (with one-third fermented in barrel) and aged 16 months in 40% new French oak, it's a classy, outstanding Pinot to drink over the coming 5-6 years.
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Byron, California
Byron Byron Winery Winery Image

Byron was founded in 1984 by winemaker Ken Brown. With years of experience as a winemaker in Santa Barbara County, Ken recognized the Santa Maria Valley's potential for great wines in the Burgundian style, and was the first winemaker to introduce Rhone-style grape varieties to the area. The first crush at Byron Vineyard & Winery produced 7,600 cases, and Byron soon gained national recognition for high quality Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

In 1990, the Robert Mondavi family purchased Byron, and Ken Brown became Winemaker and General Manager. He and Tim Mondavi, Robert's son, set about designing the new Byron Winery as an expression of their shared belief in natural farming, experimental viticulture and gentle grape handling. They wanted to eliminate pumping, which shears grape stems, skin and seeds, allows tannins and other harsh elements into the juice and can make wine bitter.

With the aid of noted architect R. Scott Johnson, who designed the Opus One winery in Napa Valley and San Francisco's Transamerica building, Ken designed a multi-level winery that replaces pumping with gravity flow, resulting in more complex, dynamic wines. Byron's vineyards were also expanded and replanted as Ken Brown experimented with trellising systems, new rootstocks and clones, row orientation, and planting density in his quest for the perfect grape.

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Sta. Rita Hills Wine

Santa Barbara, California

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A superior source of California Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Sta. Rita Hills is the coolest, westernmost sub-region of the larger Santa Ynez Valley appellation within Santa Barbara County. This relatively new AVA is unquestionably one to keep an eye on.

The climate of Sta. Rita Hills is a natural match for Chardonnay and Pinot noir, thanks to the crisp ocean breezes and well-drained, limestone-rich calcareous soil. Here, grapes ripen just enough, while retaining brisk acidity and harmonious balance.

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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.”

RGL50014354_2014 Item# 530492

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