Melville Sta. Rita Hills Estate Pinot Noir 2016
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|Region||California, Central Coast, Sta. Rita Hills|
Pale ruby in color, ripe and vivid aromatics of red raspberry, orange zest and rhubarb spring from the glass. On the palate, savory notes of black tea, nori and eucalyptus mingle with fresh impressions of pomegranate, Bing cherry and plum skin. Soft tannins and fresh acidity, combined with the tenderness of the wine lead to a lengthy and cohesive finish.
The 2016 Pinot Noir Estate is a blend of the seventeen clones on the property. Freshly cut flowers, spice, mint, blood orange and dried flowers give the Estate beguiling aromatic complexity and nuance. There is a sense of translucent beauty in the 2016 that is fabulous, while the 40% whole clusters are very nicely integrated. This is such a tremendous wine.
"I'm the most proud of this wine," Chad Melville says. "This includes all 16 clones, around 130 different lots. It's like an orchestra, using what's left from the single-vineyard blends. To be able to pull aside those other sweet vineyard spots to bottle separately and still have this wine keep kicking ass—I'm becoming a better farmer and learning the land." Medium ruby in color, the 2016 Pinot Noir Estate has a very bright, sunny nose of tangerine peel, ripe red cherries, spiced cranberries and rhubarb with hints of tree bark, dried earth, oolong tea and crushed strawberries plus a white pepper hint. It's light to medium-bodied with a silky texture, intense, juicy earth-accented red fruits, softly grainy tannins and a long finish. 4,877 cases were produced and at this price point, this makes a good value-for-money casual bottle.
Starting with the value-priced 2016 Pinot Noir Sta. Rita Hills, it was 60% destemmed, saw a long 30-day maceration, and was aged all in very old barrels. This medium ruby/plum-hued effort offers complex notes of macerated cherries, dried strawberries, forest floor, spice, and earth. With medium body, a light, elegant texture, ultra-fine tannins, and a great finish, it's a no-brainer purchase to enjoy over the coming 7-8 years (or more).