Palmina Pinot Grigio 2017
The pale straw color of the wine shows brilliantly in the glass. On the nose, aromas of apricot along with floral notes of night jasmine, honeysuckle and tuberose. The wine has more body than a typical Pinot Grigio with a round, voluptuous mouthfeel and flavors of apricots, white peach and white cherry finishing with focused acidity.
The dry acidity of the wine makes it a classic food wine. Creamy pasta dishes such as risotto and rich seafood recipes will be a great companion to this wine. However, it is also a beautiful "patio wine" during the warm days of summer and will pair well with cured meats like salami, crab cakes, and grilled fish.
Palmina’s philosophy, passion and strongly held belief is that wine is an extension of the plate, a component of a meal and a means to bring people together. Formed by winemaker Steve Clifton (of La Voix Winery and formerly of Brewer-Clifton Wines) in 1995, Palmina is named in honor of Steve’s great friend Paula. Like a grandmother to him, she taught Steve the love of cooking, wine and the Italian lifestyle and was a spark in his life. After Paula succumbed to breast cancer, Steve found that her given name on her Italian birth certificate was Palmina, and the winery was thus fittingly named.
Palmina produces a full range of wines crafted solely from Italian varietals with names that are as fun to say as they are delicious to drink; Dolcetto, Barbera, Nebbiolo, Pinot Grigio. Palmina translates the history of those grapes to the growing conditions and vineyard sites of the very unique characteristics of Santa Barbara County. In California, the transverse mountain ranges typically run north to south but the Santa Barbara County region is unlike any other in the world: its transverse ranges take a turn, running east and west. This creates a unique growing climate for a range of grape varietals by offering daily, both hot and cool climates. The resulting wines are Italian by inspiration with flavors rooted in Santa Barbara County, and all are intended to be a delicious component of a meal.
Palmina “pure farms” its 11 acres in Santa Barbara County. Pure farming gives back more than it takes. Unwavering in its farming standards, Palmina does not utilize herbicides or pesticides. Weed-clearing is done through laborious hand-hoeing, with critical soil nutrients reintroduced by planting organic legumes and grasses between the vines. With mindful intention, organic, sustainable and biodynamic practices are utilized.
With a dry and mild climate cooled significantly by moist ocean fog and breezes, Santa Barbara County is a grape-grower’s dream. Part of the larger Central Coast appellation, Santa Barbara is home to Santa Maria Valley and Santa Ynez Valley. The conditions here provide an opportunity for nearly effortless production of high-quality cool-climate wines. This is also the site of the 2004 film Sideways, which caused Pinot Noir’s popularity to skyrocket and brought new acclaim to the region.
Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are the stars of Santa Barbara, producing wines marked by racy acidity. Crisp Sauvignon Blanc and savory Syrah are also important. The region is home to many young and enthusiastic winemakers eager to experiment with less common varieties including Chenin Blanc, Grüner Veltliner, Trousseau Gris, Gamay and Cabernet Franc, making it an exciting area to watch.
Showing a unique rosy, purplish hue upon full ripeness, this “white” variety is actually born out of a mutation of Pinot Noir. The grape boasts two versions of its name, as well as two generally distinct styles. In Italy, Pinot Grigio achieves most success in the mountainous regions of Trentino and Alto Adige as well as in the neighboring Friuli—all in Italy’s northeast. France's Alsace and Oregon's Willamette Valley produce some of the world's most well-regarded Pinot Gris wine. California produces both styles with success.
Tasting Notes for Pinot Grigio
Pinot Grigio is a dry, white wine naturally low in acidity. Pinot Grigio wines showcase signature flavors and aromas of stone fruit, citrus, honeysuckle, pear and almond. Alsatian styles are aromatic (think rose and honey), richly textured and sometimes relatively higher in alcohol compared to their Italian counterpart. As Pinot Grigio in Italy, the style is often light and charming.
Perfect Food Pairings for Pinot Grigio
The viscosity of a typical Alsatian Pinot Gris allows it to fit in harmoniously with the region's rich foods like pork, charcuterie and foie gras. Pinot Grigio, on the other hand, with its citrusy freshness, works well as an aperitif wine or with seafood and subtle chicken dishes.
Sommelier Secrets for Pinot Grigio
Given the pinkish color of its berries and aromatic potential if cared for to fully ripen, the Pinot Grigio variety is actually one that is commonly used to make "orange wines." An orange wine is a white wine made in the red wine method, i.e. with fermentation on its skins. This process leads to a wine with more ephemeral aromas, complexity on the palate and a pleasant, light orange hue.