Los Carneros 2009
2009 proved to be a mild, relatively cool growing season. Without much frost nor many heat spikes, the lack of rain (2/3 of normal for the third consecutive year) did not present any challenges. Overall, the vintage provided extended hang time for the grapes without excessive ripeness, leading to forward, bright fruit with mature flavors and tannins.
The Pinot Noir grapes for this wine were grown on hillside vineyards in the cool Carneros region. The blend represents a composite of several Pinot Noir clones from mature vines. The region is noted for its cool climate and low yields, being situated on the north side of the San Francisco Bay, and is well-known for its Burgundian-style terroir.
The grapes for this Pinot Noir were hand picked in September at 24º Brix. After destemming, the grapes were whole-berry fermented in open-top fermenters, which were punched down manually to provide maximum flavor and minimum harsh tannins. Following fermentation, the wine was transferred to small French oak barrels for fourteen months. The barrels were 35% new and 65% used (2nd and 3rd year.) Prior to bottling, the wine received minimal filtration and fining to preserve the fresh berry flavors.
Dark plums, cherry, cola and leather are present in this wine’s aroma. The soft vanilla tones from the oak blend perfectly with the intense fruit core and soft tannins, providing complexity and balance and leading to a lingering finish.
Ratings & Reviews
"Nearing four years of age, this Pinot is delicious to drink now. It's mellow and silky, with just enough acidity to give the raspberry and red currant flavors zest. This is Waterstoneís most complete Pinot Noir in many years."
- Wine Enthusiast Advance Buying Guide, July 2013 Download PDF
4 Stars, Exceptional
"Brilliant raspberry color. The nose is wonderfully fresh and complex with scents of cherry and plum with accents of earth, clove, allspice, and oak with hints of campfire embers. The palate echoes the nose delivering beautiful contrasting flavors of sweet and tart cherries with hints of tar, oak, vanilla bean, and brown baking spices. Ideally balanced with true Pinot character. Offered at a sensible price as well."
- Bev X, August 2011 Download PDF
"Distinctive; the nose delivers spice, smoke, interest, and intriguing cherry bomb fruit with vanilla and fast oak streaks. From first taste the palate lets you know itís going to be tough to put down. All the aromatic qualities carry through to the palate in technicolor. A rocking price from a grooving Carneros Pinot. Bargain!"
- Winethropology, August 2011 Download PDF
"Transparent red in color, this Pinot has aromas of red raspberries, cherries and vanilla, with a touch of earthiness. Itís medium bodied, with red cherry and berry flavors and subtle tannins."
- Tina Caputo, Wine Review Online, July 2011 Download PDF
Chairman's Award, Unanimous Gold
2009 Riverside International Wine Competition
• Varietal Composition: 100% Pinot Noir
• Appellation: Carneros
• Alcohol: 14.4%
• TA: 0.59 g/100ml
• pH: 3.63
• Oak Aging: 14 months
• Oak Cooperage: French oak, 35% new
• Bottling Date: March 12, 2011
• Production: 1,241 cases