Saturday, November 24, 2012

Carte Blanche: Power Play Pinot

In the days surrounding Thanksgiving, a lot of empty Pinot Noir bottles have made their way into the recycling bin.  Something about the cooling weather, foul-focused menus, and the need for a break from big-boned reds drives the reach for Pinot.  It just fits.

By happy coincidence, the folks at Carte Blanche sent samples of their newest wine, a Pinot.  Carte Blanche is no stranger to Winethropology as regular readers will recall from this spring's reviews of their core reds and whites.  Re-reading those reviews is a joyful trip back in time - this startup outfit can make really incredible wine.  So, how does the Allen-Morlet team do with this fickle variety?  Read on.

2010 Carte Blanche Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast Nobles Ranch Vineyard $75
Lovers of Tawny Port will find instant kinship in the distinctly intense Port-like aromatics of this powerful Pinot.  The aromatics carry true through the palate to deliver such concentration, and generosity of high notes and mulling spice as to make one question whether this is, in fact, the same delicate grape that often appears thin and lacy.  Even by Sonoma Coast standards, this is a monster of a wine, yet it manages to package all this in an envelope of bewildering, monolithic texture.  In short, there is nothing typical about this haunting powerhouse of a wine.  Though almost too much to handle now, given a year or two, this wine will be a jaw-dropper before long.


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