Lucia Vineyards Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir 2017
A beautifully pure expression of this varietal, the 2017 Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir sings with the greatest notes of each vineyard from which it was born (47% Pisoni, 29% Garys’, and 24% Soberanes). Shielded amongst a brilliant youthful ruby hue, waves of Bing cherry, violet, and sandalwood spice escape into the glass as this wine takes its first breath. On the palate, this wine stuns with the complexity and focus of one of its single vineyard siblings. The main act showcases bright notes of raspberry and strawberry cream paired with more elegant flavors of sage and baking spice, which open the curtain one last time for an encore of focused acidity and a layered, lingering finish.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
As to the Pinot Noirs, the 2017 Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands is a gem of a wine that’s unquestionably at the same level as the single vineyard releases. Mulberries, black raspberries, spring flowers, and forest floor notes all emerge from this medium to full-bodied, elegant Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir that leads with its fruit. It will keep for 7-8 years.
This appellation blend is a compelling show of the region, starting with fresh and lively aromas of black cherry, raspberry, loamy soil and crushed slate. The earthy quality is prominent on the palate, but backed up by deep accents of boysenberry and cardamom.
Medium ruby-purple, the nose of the 2017 Pinot Noir SLH opens to cola, woodsmoke, potpourri and earth with perfectly ripe, spicy red and black fruits at the core. Medium-bodied with intense spicy fruits in the mouth, it's knit by fine, grainy tannins and juicy acidity to lift the long, layered finish.
Ripe, featuring concentrated raspberry and spice flavors, backed by firm tannins. Very chocolaty midpalate, with plenty of creamy accents and peppery hints on the toasty finish. Drink now through 2023.
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.
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.”