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Cargasacchi Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir 2011

Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
    14.5% ABV
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    14.5% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    The saturated purple hue is opaque with distinctive Pinot Noir perfume of red and purple berries and violets. In the mouth this is a luscious, richly textured wine that balances fruit, hints of soy, spice and tannin. Exhibiting layers of blackberry and small dark fruit flavors woven with firm, ripe, tannins for a fruit driven, persistent, mouthwatering finish.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Cargasacchi

    Cargasacchi

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    Cargasacchi, Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
    Our vineyards are in the extreme western part of Santa Barbara County where our family has been farming for generations. The Cargasacchi Vineyard was planted in 1998 on the ranch just off Sweeney Road. It comprises twelve acres of Pinot Noir, all of which are clone 115.

    The Sta.Rita Hills appellation and the region to its west represent an extreme area for winegrowing - a typical day starts with a marine layer of fog that burns off around 10am; then as things warm up, a wind from the Ocean picks up, bringing cooler temperatures, and eventually that marine fog again. These weather patterns produce a very long grape-growing season, producing very well developed flavors and tannins in the resulting wines.

    The area is also the bed of an ancient sea, so there are large deposits of diatomaceous earth in and around the vineyards. This limestone produces a discernable edge and minerality in the wines.

    Sta. Rita Hills

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    A superior source of Californian wine beloved by Burgundy fans, Sta. Rita Hills is the coolest, western most sub-region of the larger Santa Ynez Valley appellation in 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, grapes ripen just enough, retaining brisk acidity and demonstrating saline minerality and harmonious balance.

    Pinot Noir

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    One of the most difficult yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is commonly referred to by winemakers as the “heartbreak grape.” However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. More reflective than most varieties of the land on which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality, and demands care in the vineyard and lots of attention in the winery. It is an important component of Champagne and the only variety permitted in red Burgundy. Pinot Noir enjoys immense popularity internationally, most notably in Oregon, California, and New Zealand.

    In the Glass

    Pinot Noir Is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry, and cherry. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and lively acidity. It ranges in body from very light to the heavier side of medium, typically landing somewhere in the middle—giving it extensive possibilities for food pairing. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount), it can develop hauntingly beautiful characteristics of fresh earth, autumn leaves, and truffles.

    Perfect Pairings

    Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon, ocean trout, and tuna. Its mild mannered tannins don’t fight with spicy food, and give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry—chicken, quail, and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, it can even match with heavier fare. Pinot Noir is also very vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

    Sommelier Secret

    Pinot Noir is dangerously drinkable, highly addictive, and has a bad habit of emptying the wallet. Look for affordable but still delicious examples from Germany (as Spätburgunder), Italy (as Pinot Nero), Chile, New Zealand, and France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions.

    AUT11CGSPINOIRCAR_2011 Item# 136812