Pinot Noir is typically considered earthy with vivid fruity flavors of ripe red fruit, cherry, chocolate, toast and spices. It’s a challenging grape variety known for its difficulty to make into good wine.
The grape is thin-skinned, late ripening, and easily damaged, and has been cultivated for a thousand years in Burgundy’s Côte d’Or — home to the most famous wines in Burgundy.
Other regions that have gained a reputation for Pinot noir include the Willamette Valley of Oregon, and the Carneros, Central Coast of California.
When the efforts of winemakers in California are successful, the resulting wine can be exceptionally good. So we were excited when Woodwork Winery offered us the opportunity to taste one of their wines.
What impressed me most about Woodwork Winery’s 2013 Pinot Noir was its smoothness, and the subtle accents of caramel and spice. For a wine so rich with varietal character, I expected a more acidic bite and aftertaste. This wine has a near perfect balance of structure and spice.
Woodwork Winery uses grapes from California’s Central Coast, aged and fermented in selected French oak. The winery selects Pinot Noir grapes from vineyards in Monterey County and Edna Valley.
The Winemaker, Monica Belavic, explains how the grapes were cold-soaked for 48 hours, with each lot then individually fermented. When fermentation was close to completion, the wines were racked onto select oak for aging.
They then tasted and blended the lots into small batches to determine the best overall profile. For this Pinot Noir, they selected their seventh batch, which they characterize as having intense fruit notes, accented by coffee, caramel and spice.
“Varietal expression is important when pairing Pinot Noir with oak and balance is the key to a great wine,” says Monica. “To do this, we customized our oak choices to match the fruit character and tannin structure of the individual vineyard lots”
More Info From Woodwork
* Our Pinot Noir shows rich varietal fruit with a touch of French oak for structure and spice.
* A majority of our grapes come from Monterey County and Edna Valley.
* We used a variety of winemaking techniques, blending several batches before coming up with our ideal wine.
* The warm, mild growing season of 2013 was excellent, encouraging complex aromas and flavors.
Woodwork Winery has created three Central Coast grown varietals delivering prominent oak influence including a 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon, 2013 Pinot Noir and 2013 Chardonnay.
The wines are available in stores nationwide and online at www.woodworkwines.com and sold at the SRP of $14.99.