2009 Caretaker Pinot Noir – Wine Wednesday

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Another pick from Trader Joe’s.  This wine was purchased for $9.99, a steal for a Pinot Noir from the Santa Maria Valley, which is near Santa Barbara California.  For those of you who remember, this region was part of the Sideways journey.  I am pretty picky about Pinot and this is one of the growing regions that I think produces some of the best Pinot Noir in California.  My fave is Russian River and the Santa Maria Valley isn’t far behind.

Like a number of Trader Joe’s wine, it isn’t easy to dig out the provenance.  To keep costs down, Trader Joe’s carries a great deal of private label wine and close-outs from larger wineries.  From what I could dig up, the Caretaker label is Trader Joe’s only.  But, Caretaker is produced by the Central Coast Wine Warehouse out of Santa Maria.  Central Coast Wine Warehouse is a facility where winemakers crush their grapes, vinify the wine and age it.  Apparently, the folks behind The Hitching Post make their wine their as well.  I am a big fan of the Hitching Post wines. 

This wine is from a great vintage.  It’s a great every day Pinot.  I know that’s like an oxymoron but it’s true.  Stock up now while the 2009 vintage is still around.

Here is our tasting notes for the 2009 Caretaker.

Appearance: clear, bright, medium minus ruby with viscous legs.

Nose: clean, developing, medium intensity of cherry, raspberry, strawberry, violet, earth, vanilla and sweet baking spices.

Palate: dry, medium plus acidity, low tannin, medium body, high alcohol, medium plus intensity of cherry, currant, raspberry, strawberry, cranberry, violet, earth, vanilla, sweet baking spices and cedar.  Medium finish.

Rating:  Very good wine.  Showcases Pinot Noir’s best characteristics in its better growing regions in California.  Bright, refreshing acidity with intense flavors of red fruit and a hint of earthiness.

 Photo courtesy of The Wine Cask Blog

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