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Melville Sta. Rita Hills Estate Pinot Noir 2010

Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
  • WS92
  • RP91
  • WE91
14.5% ABV
  • WE94
  • D93
  • RP90
  • WE93
  • RP92
  • RP92
  • WE89
  • RP91
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Deep ruby red in color with an opulent and complex nose of black tea, persimmon, chinese five-spice, and pumpkin pie. Fresh red and blue fruit components of plum duck sauce, raspberry reduction, and bing cherry weave seamlessly on the palate along with umami-like notes of, dashi, chanterelles, nori, and miso. The mouthfeel is plush and complete yet finishes with elegance and restraint.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 92
Wine Spectator
Tight and fresh, with vivid wild berry and raspberry character that's pure and spicy, with a stemmy edge, yet it works well, as the fruit density and tannins fold together in a pleasing way. Drink now through 2022.
RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Melville's 2010 Pinot Noir Estate presents an intriguing fabric of sweet candied cherries, rose petals, mint and sweet herbs. This is an especially juicy, yet medium-bodied Pinot built on finesse and elegance. The 2010 is simply gorgeous.
WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Rich and ripe in berry jam and spice flavors, this Pinot is enjoyable now for its silky texture and bright acidity.
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Melville

Melville

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Melville, Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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In 1989, Melville Vineyards, a family owned and operated enterprise was founded in Sonoma County's Knights Valley, where Ron Melville grew high quality, much sought after Chardonnay, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon. In 1996, Ron's desire to grow Pinot Noir and Chardonnay brought Melville Vineyards to Lompoc's Sta. Rita Hills, located in the western Santa Ynez Valley of Santa Barbara County, California.

The Sta. Rita Hills appellation is where Ron Melville and his sons Brent and Chad Melville decided to develop their estate vineyards and winery. Since then, they have also developed an interest in Rhone varietals, particularly Northern Rhone Syrah and Viognier. The Melville estate achieves quality through the integrity of its farming practice and its respect to the microclimate. The Melvilles believe that a fine wine begins in the terroir (teh-RWAHR) or microclimate of a vineyard. Terroir is the French term for soil. In the vineyard, it encompasses soil type and geographic factors which may influence the quality of wine. This is indicative of the Melvilles' decision to grow wine in the Sta. Rita Hills (AVA) appellation.

Sta. Rita Hills

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A superior source of California Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Sta. Rita Hills is the coolest, westernmost sub-region of the larger Santa Ynez Valley appellation within Santa Barbara County. This relatively new AVA is unquestionably one to keep an eye on.

The climate of Sta. Rita Hills is a natural match for Chardonnay and Pinot noir, thanks to the crisp ocean breezes and well-drained, limestone-rich calcareous soil. Here, grapes ripen just enough, while retaining brisk acidity and harmonious balance.

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.

CHMMLV35010_2010 Item# 120980