The 2018 Cep Pinot noir delivers balance, elegance and complexity you normally do not find at this price point. This is due to 100% of the wine coming from de-classified barrels of Peay Vineyards Estate Pinot noirs from our low yielding, cold, and windswept vineyard on the far West Sonoma Coast. The high-toned nose is captivating with cranberry, raspberry and pomegranate fruit aromas framed by clove, decaying leaves, and rose petal notes. The mouth feel is medium bodied with light tannins and the same red fruits and dried leaf components framing the wine. The finish is quite long with lingering hints of cherry cream and anise seed.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
The 2018 Estate Pinot Noir is an incredible value this vintage, with loads of floral aromas over pure, bright red cherries, dried cranberries and rhubarb with accents of tangerine and dust. The palate is light to medium-bodied with bright, earth and spice-laced flavors, juicy uplift and a long finish. 600 cases were made.
Cep Pinot Noir, Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc, and Chardonnay are made from barrels of wine that do not make it into one of the Peay wines. All the blending for the Peay cuvees is done blind – without knowing the amount each potential wine will make to keep the finance guy honest – so they choose the wine that best expresses the cuvee and the vintage. After all the wines for the vintage are put together, Vanessa will decide they have X extra barrels, which become Cep. The resulting wines are delicious and at half the price of Peay, an incredible steal.
The Sonoma Coast AVA is large in area but, not counting overlapping regions like Russian River Valley, only has a few thousand acres of grapevines—and it’s no wonder. Much of the region is rugged and not easily accessible. Its proximity to the Pacific Ocean’s fog and cool breezes limits the varieties that can be cultivated, but it proves to be an ideal environment for high quality Pinot Noir.
Since fog is a frequent fact of life here, as are heavy marine layers that sometimes bring rain, the best vineyards are wisely planted above the fog line, on picturesque ridges that capture enough sun to provide even ripening. That, with the overnight drop in temperature that reliably preserves acidity, results in fine expressions of Pinot Noir that often receive tremendous critic and consumer praise alike, and are often in high demand.