Dark garnet with wide amber edges. Effusive barnyard, exclusively Pinot-generated nuttiness and plummy fruit in the nose so ripely pure Pinot it DEFINES Pinot. So many Pinots these days have noses packed with so many other things–read: Syrah–it almost shocks to stick your nose into something that just REEKS pure Pinot Noir. New car and horse-stall, with a buttery *roundness* evoking Sonoma Coast or Russian River Valley. An edgy petrichor coolness sharpens all, engaging the wet leather and funk into streamlined varietal-correctness rarely seen but in old-school producers. Bread-dough alongside green forest loam and cut roots add to the complexity of the bouquet.
These days we seem to be confronted with two styles of Pinot: rich black concentrated 14-7 stuff from warmer climates and winemakers aiming for intensity and tourist-appeal–often more akin to California Rhone products–and transparent low-13 stuff from fog-ridden IPOB-pledges with brilliant fruit but often shocking in green intensity. This is the best of both worlds and while I have regularly been critical of Pinot Noir from the Cambria/San Simeon view-shed, this one totally NAILS it in a way few San Luis Obispo County producers do.
In the mouth, instant super-ripe fruit fills the palate, with bitter green structure–sharp and biting–complimenting and intensifying the fruit. A pleasantly thin middle shows off the cherry filling and again proving to all this is PURE Pinot, made in a way Pinot shows best. On one hand ripe and dark and dense and at the same time exemplifying all of the variety’s ethereal and clairvoyant tendencies. Not a trace of rootbeer, although flat cola comes to mind–Mexican Pepsi–in the way the fruit extract perfectly interacts with clean mud.
Finish shows incredible acid and medium tannins, with a lasting note of bitter tire and pine-pitch, again quite reminiscent of Pinot Noir from 300 miles further North. A tiny-production wine only currently available from the web-site, it is an offering deserving of the highest marks.
2013 LAST LIGHT WINE CO Pinot Noir Derbyshire San Simeon San Luis Obispo Co. 13.2