In the United States, Pinot Noir has gained a massive amount of popularity. From the Central Coast to the Santa Cruz Mountains, Pinot Noir has excelled and continues to provide enthusiasts with a vast array of different expressions. The mineral-driven, wild berry examples from Santa Cruz are an Old World Pinot lover’s dream come true, while the riper, fleshier Pinots from the Central Coast provide us with all the plush Pinot fruit one could hope for.
The wine I chose is a pleaser in every way. Its price point, at $24, is highly attractive, and the wine delivers in a big way. It’s not too ripe, nor does it need years to come around. This is a food-friendly Pinot that can also be sipped and admired on its own, and it paired perfectly with a Fennel-Crusted Roast Pork Loin. It’s a simple recipe and a great pairing. The soft, succulent loin of pork yields to Pinot’s fruit and moderate acidity, and the aromatic fennel complements its bouquet. Throw in pan-roasted vegetables and you have an entire meal.
2009 Calera Pinot Noir - The nose was highly expressive with a bouquet that showed sweet cherries, pine nettles and dark soil notes. On the palate, it was silky smooth yet juicy, with pure dark cherry fruit, hints of herbs, and a crack of pepper. The finish followed suit, as its red fruit and earthy profile slowly melted away from the palate. (91 points)