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Lucia Vineyards Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir 2016

Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
  • JD93
750ML / 0% ABV
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  • RP91
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Winemaker Notes

This Lucia Pinot Noir, reflects its harmonious blend of three vineyards: (47% Pisoni, 29% Garys’, and 24% Soberanes) in its deep garnet color. It begins by enticing the palate with ripe plum and raspberry, spiced cherries and black tea, and subtle notes of cedar and forest floor. As this wine continues to open up, it shows a complex palate of firm tannins and intense character. Like our single-vineyard bottlings, we use only free-run wine to develop the character of this appellation-based vintage. The three vineyards from which it has been created reflect the Santa Lucia Highlands’ diverse features, from the concentration of its mountain fruit to the light, elegant aromas of its more fog-laden vineyards.

Critical Acclaim

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JD 93
Jeb Dunnuck
The appellation 2016 Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands is a beauty. Sourced from Soberanes, Garys’, and Pisoni, it’s a silky, seamless effort that offers lots of upfront black raspberry and cherry fruits intermixed with crushed flowers and exotic spices. It has the fruit of the appellation yet has elegance and finesse as well. Drink it over the coming 6-8 years.
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Lucia Vineyards

Lucia Vineyards

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Lucia Vineyards, California
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Headed by family matriarch Jane, the Pisoni family has been farming for three generations in the Santa Lucia Highlands. Today, maverick vintner Gary Pisoni who has grown grapes with uncompromised practices in the appellation for over thirty years is joined by his two sons, Mark & Jeff. Mark is the farmer of the family and oversees the meticulous care of the vines at the Pisoni, Garys' and Soberanes Vineyards. Jeff is the winemaker and crafts distinctive wines that reflect the family's estate properties.
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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 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.

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Pinot Noir

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One of the most finicky yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is a labor of love for many. However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. In fact, it is the only red variety permitted in Burgundy. Highly reflective of its terroir, Pinot Noir prefers calcareous soils and a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality and demands a lot of attention in the vineyard and winery. It retains even more glory as an important component of Champagne as well as on its own in France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions. This sensational grape enjoys immense international success, most notably growing in Oregon, California and New Zealand with smaller amounts in Chile, Germany (as Spätburgunder) and Italy (as Pinot Nero).

In the Glass

Pinot Noir is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry and cherry with some heftier styles delving into the red or purple plum and in the other direction, red or orange citrus. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and a lively acidity. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount) it can develop hauntingly alluring characteristics of fresh earth, savory spice, dried fruit and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon and tuna but its mild mannered tannins give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry: chicken, quail and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, Pinot noir has proven it isn’t afraid of beef. California examples work splendidly well with barbecue and Pinot Noir is also vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

For administrative purposes, the region of Beaujolais is often included in Burgundy. But it is extremely different in terms of topography, soil and climate, and the important red grape here is ultimately Gamay, not Pinot noir. Truth be told, there is a tiny amount of Gamay sprinkled around the outlying parts of Burgundy (mainly in Maconnais) but it isn’t allowed with any great significance and certainly not in any Village or Cru level wines. So "red Burgundy" still necessarily refers to Pinot noir.

STC327489_2016 Item# 508248