The holiday celebrations regularly feature fine wines, wines which frequently have been saved for a special holiday occasion. One of wines many favor for the holiday season is a quality Pinot Noir, and one of the better choices for 2015 is the 2013 J Vineyards & Winery Russian River Valley Pinot Noir.
For those not familiar with J Vineyards, it is well known among many as a winery which can produce high quality sparkling and high quality varietals. The wines for J come from both Estate grapes and carefully selected vineyards in both the Sonoma area as well as prime vineyards throughout the state.
Winemakers Nicole Hitchcock and Scott Anderson have put significant efforts into getting the best from grapes sourced locally and throughout the Russian River Valley AVA. The selection of these grapes has led to great success in producing superior wines appreciated by individuals looking a step beyond the $15.00 shelf wines.
The 2013 Pinot Noir reflects the belief by Hitchcock and Anderson that the terroir strongly influences the final product. The 2013 has a berry theme. Initially cherry, blackberry and raspberry prevail, but they are quickly followed by a lingering tea flavor. The nose picks up the nuances of strawberry and spices.
This is a pleasantly soft Pinot Noir. It can pair with traditional holiday meals or can be placed along cheese appetizers prior to the main course. In either case, all will enjoy the wine with the food.
As many know, 2013 was an excellent year for grapes in the Sonoma area. The growing conditions were near perfect for all varietals, and the Russian River Valley AVA met or exceeded the expectations of nearly all growers. With the high quality grapes the season provided, harvest of the Pinot Noir began in August and the results were wonderful, full bodied grapes which were ready for the press.
Harvest took place at night and consisted of whole cluster pickings. After harvest, the grapes were hand-sorted and destemmed. Following the destemming, the grapes were gravity fed to small fermentation tanks. Fermentation was initially whole berry. After this fermentation the grapes were cold soaked for 5 days, then the must was fermented for seven to 10 days.
J’s winemakers kept the growth lots separate until the final blending. There were 92 separate lots initially, so the blending choices were virtually unlimited. Final blending did not occur until the following May, with the juices kept in 100% French Oak until final blending occurred.
As can be surmised from the above, the 2013 J Pinot from the Russian River valley and other select AVA’s is a flavorful and complex wine. It is definitely one to buy for this Holiday Season, but is worth getting enough to stockpile for future occasions.
Have a winederful day and enjoy the season with a nice J Pinot Noir.
(Wine sample courtesy of J Vineyards.)