The 2007 vintage is an exceptional one for Santa Barbara Pinot Noir. Winter and late spring rains were met with warm summer sunshine, and harvest was a smooth progression with moderate temperatures throughout. Flavor and sugar were hand in hand this year, producing balanced wines with concentrated flavors. In a secluded canyon less than twenty miles from the Pacific Ocean, along the Santa Maria Bench, down a narrow cut framed by rocky cliffs, is our North Canyon Vineyard. It’s a box canyon that runs north to south with the Cuyama River cutting through the middle dividing Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties. The surrounding hills rise to 1,000 feet, catching the cool ocean breezes in the afternoon. Pinot Noir of great character is possible here, where the growing season is mild and the soil is meager. The vineyard’s soils are primarily clay loam with some shale, the vines have to struggle and fight to thrive, consequently producing rich flavor. The result from is a soft, pretty Pinot Noir with brightness and character immediately recognizable as Santa Barbara. The lots were fermented separately and aged for 12 months in French oak barrels (46% new).
The 2007 Cuyama River Pinot Noir shows aromas of lilac, dusty red cherry and a bit of sage. The palate follows through with juicy notes of raspberry, milk chocolate, violet and red cherry. The sumptuous, velvety texture allows all of the flavors in this wine to shine.
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