2019 Garys' Pinot Noir
Located in the well-drained foothills above the Salinas Valley, the Santa Lucia Highlands Appellation is California’s most distinctive region for growing terroir-driven wines. Strong afternoon winds and coastal fog originating from nearby Monterey Bay flow through the AVA, resulting in one of the longest growing seasons in North America.
Garys’ Vineyard, located on a wide alluvial mesa in the heart of the Santa Lucia Highlands, is named after grape-growing partners Gary Pisoni and Gary Franscioni. Garys’ Vineyard is known for spicy aromatics and rich berry flavors, and has subsequently gained reputation for producing some of California’s most sought-after wines.
The grapes were completely destemmed after hand sorting, and fermented with native yeast in open top tanks. Manual punch downs provided supple texture and soft tannins. The wine was transferred to a combination of medium and medium-plus toast Burgundy barrels, 50% new, for malo-lactic fermentation and ten months of aging.
Dan Lee and Sam Smith have fashioned a rare pinot, demonstrating classic Garys’ structure and elegance. The nose of red and black fruits, turned earth, and baking spices is echoed on the palate by flavors of cola spice, black tea, and sandalwood. This wine features a medium body framed by elegant tannins and medium acidity – an outstanding match for duck confit, lamb shank, or prime rib.
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"A single-vineyard Pinot Noir from the Garys’ Vineyard in Santa Lucia Highlands spends 10 months in 50% new French oak barrels. Light ruby and violet in the glass, the wine is simply stunning to look at with a perfumed nose to match - think black raspberry, blue plums, fresh violet petals, roasted espresso and a touch of earthiness. The wine is medium to full bodied on the palate, with ample amounts of acidity to match the bold and juicy fruit components. Only 96 cases produced." - Jeremy Young, August 2021