Friday, September 12, 2008

Wine Review – 2004 Saintsbury – Carneros Pinot Noir (Lee Vineyard)

We had been saving this wine for a special occasion and the other night we found such an occasion. It was Meg’s parents 48th wedding anniversary. Also, we wanted to thank them for all of the help they have provided us through the previous year. In addition it was their first night back in town after being gone for over a month out helping Meg’s sister with her new baby. I had been sitting on this bottle for almost 2 years and I knew when we opened it, it was going to be with Meg’s parents. This is one of their favorite wines and we knew it was going to be a special treat for them. According to the wine guy I bought it from, he received a few bottles by mistake and there was only 1 restaurant in Georgia that was getting this vintage. The 6 bottles he received were suppose to go to Joël, a very upscale restaurant in Buckhead, but they were delivered to him and he was not going to give them back. He said he was keeping two for himself and was going to sell the other four. Once he noticed that we were looking at pinots, he pulled out one of the bottles from behind the counter. He went through the entire story and we were intrigued but at that point didn’t know how much it was going to cost. After hearing his story and seeing the excitement on his face, I knew it was going to blow my budget! But also knowing how special it was and how special it would be to Meg’s parents, I went ahead and bought it! I will devulge the price at the end of the review but I will say that if this bottle had made it to Joël, it would have been priced between $120-$140!

OK, enough of the back story and on to the review! This pinot noir was not only a treat for Meg’s parents, it was truely a treat for us as well. It had a beautiful light garnet color and had aromas of cherry, minerals and a slight smokeyness. This pinot noir is a medium bodied wine that fits the typical French style of wine making. It has the taste and feel of an excelent French burgundy even though it is a California wine. It is very silky in the mouth with tastes of berry, herbs and leather. It has a long, smooth finish and makes you long for your next sip. This was an excellent wine and could be aged for up to another 10 years. It went wonderfuly with our mango shrimp dish and would also go nicely with other seafood or chicken dishes. This particular bottle cost me $65 and was well worth it. There are several other Saintsbury pinot noirs out there that aren’t as expensive. They come from different vineyards and regions. All of the Saintbury wines I have had have been very good, but this 04 Lee’s Vineyard was excellent!


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