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Paraiso Vineyards West Terrace Pinot Noir 2006

  • CG88
750ML / 0% ABV
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750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Only 10 barrels of our rarest Pinot, produced from the estate's best blocks.

Critical Acclaim

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CG 88
Connoisseurs' Guide
Rich, ripe and fleshy with a bent to plushness that often comes with wines from its appellation, the Paraiso West Terrace Pinot is an accessible, fruit-forward wine whose black-cherry themes are accented with a bare hint of chocolate. Mildly tannic, but in no way grippy or tough, it can be enjoyed early on or held for a few years of cellaring.
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Paraiso Vineyards

Paraiso Vineyards

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Paraiso Vineyards, California
Rich and Claudia Smith arrived in Monterey County in 1973, their children and belongings in the car. Fresh out of college, the young couple was searching for the perfect locale to try out their newly minted U.C. Davis training. Thirty years later, the Smith Family is one of the most influential and respected growers on California’s Central Coast – the Smith Family has been instrumental in Monterey’s rise to prominence as a world-class winegrowing region. Today Rich and his son Jason oversee 3,000 acres of grapes throughout Monterey County, providing fruit to Beringer, Hess, Mondavi, Kendall-Jackson, and many others. In 1988, the Smiths began producing very limited, much sought-after wines under their own P.S.V. banner...

The rugged Santa Lucia Mountains frame Monterey County’s fertile Salinas Valley on the west, separating it from the Pacific Ocean. The famed Santa Lucia Highlands appellation encompasses a series of small alluvial terraces on the lower slopes of the range – perfect for boutique growers of world-class Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Syrah. The vines of this unique hillside district enjoy cooling ocean breezes and fog from nearby Monterey Bay. The resulting slow, gentle ripening contributes to California’s longest “hang time” – creating exceptional intensity, complexity, and balance in the grapes. Planted in 1973, the sixteen small vineyard plots of Paraiso Springs occupy unique microclimatic niches on the 400-acre estate. With varying elevations and soils, each plot boasts its own terroir, its own special sense of place…

The Smith Family has earned its reputation through constant experimentation and innovation, both in the vineyard and in the cellar. Combining time-honored techniques with these latest advances, Rich and Claudia’s son-in-law, winemaker David Fleming, practices his art – hands-on, barrel-by-barrel. The limited release wines of P.S.V. are among the most awarded in the state, eagerly sought after by collectors across the country…

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The largest and perhaps most varied of California’s wine-growing regions, the Central Coast produces a good majority of the state's wine. This vast district stretches from San Francisco all the way to Santa Barbara along the coast, and reaches inland nearly all the way to the Central Valley.

Encompassing an extremely diverse array of climates, soil types and wine styles, it contains many smaller sub-AVAs, including San Francisco Bay, Monterey, the Santa Cruz Mountains, Paso Robles, Edna Valley, Santa Ynez Valley and Santa Maria Valley.

While the region could probably support almost any major grape varietiy, it is famous for a few. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel are among the major ones. The Central Coast is home to many of the state's small, artisanal wineries crafting unique, high-quality wines, as well as larger producers also making exceptional wines.

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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).

Tasting Notes for Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is a dry red wine, typically diominated by red fruit—strawberry, raspberry and cherry with some heftier styles showing black plum and more delicate styles of Pinot giving citrus qualities. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and a lively acidity. With age Pinot Noir can develop hauntingly alluring characteristics of fresh earth, savory spice and dried fruit.

Perfect Food Pairings for Pinot Noir

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of salmon or texture of 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 Secrets for Pinot Noir

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.

SWS197113_2006 Item# 101409

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