Angeline Vineyards’ Pinot is a wine that takes advantage of California’s diverse growing conditions. Sourcing is not relegated to a single county or growing region, but chosen from around the state: The warmer regions of the Central coast; the Northern Coast’s cool, foggy valleys. Another drought year in California, 2016 was ultimately one more in a string of excellent vintages. A warm, dry winter brought around an early spring and warm summer. Yields were low, harvest was early, and fruit quality cannot be understated.
Grapes were picked early in the morning, the time in a vineyard when a chill still hangs in the air. Bunches were transported in small bins to avoid crushing the thin-skinned Pinot. Each lot is de-stemmed, but not crushed, to avoid extracting the bitter tannins found in skins and seeds. The lots are fermented in cool stainless steel with minimal handling to preserve fruit notes in the finished wine. After pressing off the skins, the wine is settled for two days, then racked to French oak barrels for malolactic fermentation and aging.
The quality of Angeline’s Pinot Noir consistently over-delivers, and the 2016 is no exception. A lively garnet colour, it opens with intense aromas of fresh cranberries, Bing cherries, and orange zest. The palate is round and juicy with lively acidity and bright flavours of fresh strawberry, cherry, raspberry, and ripe plum layered with vanilla, earth, black tea, and toasted oak.