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Gallo Signature Series Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir 2009

Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
  • RP91
14.04% ABV
  • RP90
  • WE93
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14.04% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The 2009 Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir has rich flavors of boysenberry, pomegranate, cherries, cassis and vanilla that meld into a long, silky mouthfeel.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2009 Pinot Noir Signature Series from the Santa Lucia Highlands is impressive. Barrel samples of other wines also looked impressive.
Range: 88-91
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Gallo Signature Series

Gallo Signature Series

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Gallo Signature Series, Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
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The Gallo Signature Series honors the journey the Gallo Family started in 1933, and it celebrates how far the family has come. With some of California's best grapes at her fingertips, third-generation winemaker Gina Gallo has created three distinct wines that could only be crafted from the Gallo family's unique combination of vineyards. For Gina, the Gallo Signature Series expresses her family's unique combination of vineyards. For Gina, the Gallo Signature Series expresses her family's passion for great vineyards and great wine, and it reflects the best the Gallo Winery has to offer. The Gallo Signature Series marks a return to hands-on, artisanal winemaking for Gina, and it brings to life the enduring legacy of Ernest and Julio Gallo.

Santa Lucia Highlands

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Perhaps the most highly regarded appellation within Monterey County, Santa Lucia Highlands AVA benefits from a combination of warm morning sunshine and bracing afternoon breezes. This allows grapes to ripen slowly and fully, resulting in concentrated, flavorful wines that retain their natural acidity. Wineries here do not shy away from innovation, and place a high priority on “green” 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.

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.

CDW134502_2009 Item# 118622