This wine has really taken off in and largely due to the influence of the movie Sideways popularity. I am glad because it deserves the limelight, but at the same time sad because now everyone wants to get a piece of the Pinot-pie and it's driving up the prices. Which is part of the reason why I've now kicked my allocation to the curb.
It a grape worthy of our attention and fascination. There are many expressions of this varietal found around the wine world, but of course the most famous expression of Pinot Noir is from its homeland in Burgundy.
That said, I have been a real fan of Sea Smoke Cellars ever since first encountering it at a wine tasting here in San Diego. There winery sits in the Sta. Rita Hill AVA, in Santa Barbara County. Pinot Noir is pretty much all they do there, except for the occasional Chardonnay. It took about six months to a year to get on their allocation list, while at the time I thought it was worth the wait, I have now found so many other Pinot Noir's that are just as good if not better, but for far less money.
With my current allocation I can purchase four Botella and one each of the other labels. I drank the 2006 a few nights back on "Open that bottle night" and wow what a treat. It has only been in laying about in my cellar for some 9 month and that small amount of bottle aging really paid off. In the glass a brightly colored core of garnet, with a much lighter colored rim. In the nose a bouquet of springtime strawberries wafting up effortlessly at first swirl.
On the palate, warm cinnamon notes melded with the raspberry and dark plum flavors typical of Santa Barbara Pinots. The Sea Smoke Botella Pinot Noir 2006 750ml was juicy, balanced, full of lively, ripe fruit, this wine is perfect for pairing with fresh caught wild Salmon, grilled to perfection over an open fire. I paid $40.00 for this bottle, which retails for $89.99 or more. Weighing in at 14.7% Alc. with an Oak profile of 40% new and 60% used French oak and barrel aging of some 16 months. I recommend at least a half hour of decanting before consuming for maximum enjoyment!
There are folks out there willing to sell you their allocation, if you troll for Sea Smoke Pinot on Wine Spectator forums. I recommend not spending more than wineries listed price. Until next time Cheers everyone!