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July 22, 2016 Wine Pick of the Week

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estancia estate pinot noir Picmonkey


2013 Pinot Noir



Monterey County

Alcohol: 13.5%

Suggested Retail: $13

“We’re always on the lookout for Pinot Noir that is affordable, a definition that’s admittedly somewhat fluid. As we’ve mentioned before, anything priced below ten bucks might be drinkable, but not likely possessing any of the beguiling qualities that this grape variety can demonstrate in better products. We found this week’s ‘Pick,’ the 2013 Estancia Pinot Noir, at a rare sale price (under $10), but even at the suggested retail of $13 it’s very worthwhile."

“Estancia has a long history with fruit from the cool climate of Monterey County, which is good Pinot Noir country. Not only is the 2013 bottling identifiable as Pinot Noir, it actually demonstrates some of this grape’s charms. The nose evokes dark cherries and raspberries . . . and there’s some spice there, too. The taste reprises the cherry/berry aromatic notes. Though the wine is medium-bodied, it brings a surprisingly lush feel in the mouth. There’s quite a lot of fruit here and, while it’s almost ‘jammy,’ it does not devolve to a sweetish finish. Of course, it shouldn’t be expected to reach the heights that pricier—much pricier in some cases—California and Oregon Pinot Noirs do. Nevertheless, it’s demonstrates enough of that magic to put a smile on the face of an ardent fan of this variety. It could also be good Pinot Noir introduction to the wine consumer who’s been spending big bucks on Bordeaux varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.”

Food Affinity: “Pinot Noir is quite food-friendly, so you could serve it with many dishes. Our first thoughts run to roasted poultry or any braised beef dish incorporating a subtle hint of nutmeg or cinnamon. Vegetarians might want pour with Eggplant Parmigiana."


Editor’s Note: Wines reviewed in Taste California Travel are encountered by our staff in several ways. They can be discovered at trade tastings or visits to wineries. They may also be purchased by staff members for their own tables or be those sent by wineries for possible review. This is an editorial feature, not advertising, and appearance cannot be secured by payment. More information can be had by contacting This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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