Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Pietra Santa Cienega Valley Pinot Noir, 2009

This winery, located in the Cienega Valley of San Benito County, makes a range of wines from Italian varietals such as Sangiovese. This is the first Pietra Santa Pinot Noir I've run across.

Light garnet color. Also light in body, and it takes some time to recognize the intensity of the aromas and flavors. Lavender and spice. Now I smell some wild berries and cherries. French oak acidity and intensity but it really doesn't come across as an oaky wine. A good measure of complexity on the long finish. For me, it doesn't measure up to Pinots from Anderson Valley and the Sonoma Coast--lacks the depth of fruit and concentration. But I like it and, at the right price, would come back for more.

The property, I learn, is part of what was once Almaden Winery, a low price favorite in the 1980s. This wine is definitely several steps up from anything I ever had from Almaden.

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