Monday, June 9, 2008

Tonights wine - older can be good

I have been wanting to sample a bottle of Brewer Clifton Pinot Noir for some time. I purchase a 1998 Santa Maria Hills from Wine Bid several years ago and tonight was the night to finally crack it open. I had heard that Brewer Clifton makes its wines in the Burgundian style (more reflective of the earth that the fruit comes from), this had at first put me off of the producer since I am not a fan of earthy Pinot Noirs. However, now that I have tried the Santa Maria Hills, and reading the Philosophy of the wine makers at Brewer Clifton, I realize that in this case the style mainly refers to site specific, but not very earthy. This was a remarkable wine for a ten year old Pinot. It was still full of rich fruit flavors, though now more dried fruit. There was dried black cherry and hints of plum. Much of the zestiness that may have been present in this unfiltered wine has become muted, but it still held up very well to the fillet mignon that we had for dinner. This also goes to the Burgundian heritage, which allows for long lived Pinots. The wine still has ample acid and rich full mouth feel. This is yet another Pinot that belies the notion that American Pinots generally do not age well. Do not discount older wines based on conventional wisdom. You never know when there will be a pleasant surprise.

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