CRU Montage Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016
The 2016 CRU Vineyard Montage Pinot Noir was sourced primarily from the marine-influenced Sarmento Vineyard in the Santa Lucia Highlands. Aged in 15% new French Oak barrels creates a nose of freshly picked cherries, blackberries, black pepper, and cocoa. The complexity of multiple clones and elevations shows flavors of cherry, pomegranate, olive, spice, cocoa, and infused tea that is nicely balanced with hints of toasted oak. This showcase wine is a true homage to classic Burgundian Pinot Noirs.
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Family-owned CRU Winery was founded by long-time friends and entrepreneurs Richard Spencer and Mike Conway. As a long-time wine lover, it had always been a dream of Richard’s to own a winery. In 2003, Richard and Mike purchased land, premium barrels and winemaking supplies to make state-of-the-art wines and began renovations on a building in Madera, California which would become the future home of CRU Winery.
Inspired by the French term cru, which traditionally speaks to a vineyard’s prestige and quality, Richard and Mike began to source grapes from some of California’s finest appellations and CRU Winery was born.
Today, CRU Winery crafts award-winning Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Rhône Varietals and Albariño from prestigious vineyards throughout California’s Central Coast.
CRU Winery is honored to be recognized for crafting high-quality wines that consistently receive 90+ point scores and gold medals from publications and competitions including Wine Enthusiast, Wine & Spirits Magazine and the San Francisco Chronicle. CRU’s history of acclaim is a testament to our talented winemaking team and grower partners.
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.
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.”