Sitting at home with the heater on, fireplace blazing, curled up in a comfy quilt while listening to rain patter against the window — it’s the perfect scene for a heart warming glass of Pinot Noir. The kind that enlivens you with its earthy aromas; envelopes you in its smooth, silky texture; and kisses you softly with the plush, subtle finish of over-ripe bush berries. The experience itself is like being wrapped in a warm blanket.
It’s an experience that Pinot lovers appreciate as an endulgence because not every bottle will gift it and, in fact, not every wine drinking moment calls for it. But when it’s what you want, it’s what you need — and there’s nothing like satisfying that craving.
There’s a reason that Testarossa sets my Pinot Noir bar — more specifically, Testarossa Gary’s Vineyard Pinot Noir. Because with each vintage it continuously delivers that undeniable — inescapable — heart-warming and utterly indulgent Pinot Noir experience.
When Larry Schaffer of Tercero oh so kindly sent me a few bottles to sample, he included this varietal that I admittedly have only heard of by name. Never having studied the grape let alone taste it’s fermented juices, I honestly didn’t know what to expect. I, of course, sought the guidance of the winemaker (Larry) when planning my first Cinsault encounter — and then just dove right in.
Thumbing around online, Twitter-chatting about Sonoma, following pretty much every winemaker I can on IG, I can’t not notice Sonoma Cutrer. I guess it’s weird that I’ve only just now bought myself a bottle. Good things, they say, are worth the wait. No longer a stranger, Sonoma Cutrer, you are my new friend, and you can be sure I’ll be calling back again and again.
Crux Winery is by far one of my favorite boutique wineries. They’re certainly setting the pace when it comes to Russian River Rhone wines — big bold flavors that are elegantly refined into some of the most balanced wines one can taste in the Rhone style. They’re the epitome of Old World conceptions meeting New World style. And the 2015 GSM Rosé is a palate-pleaser that proved just that.
I bought this on a whim. Maybe it’s because I’m reading Passion and Pinot and the main characters are on their way to Oregon. Maybe it’s because the first wine that truly touched my heart was from Willamette. Or Maybe it’s because I spend a lot of time studying the wines closest to home (Napa and Sonoma) that I felt like venturing across state borders. So it is with that notion that I present my first step onto the Oregon Trail of Wine.