2008 Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir • Garey Ranch & Los Alamos Vineyards
Santa Barbara County
What we say
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Mission Codename: A Mother’s Love – Revisited
Operative: Agent White
Objective: Investigate Rumors of the exceptional wines from Gioia in Santa Barbara
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Gioia Winery
Wine Subject: 2008 Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir
Winemaker: Teri Love
Santa Barbara County’s Pinot Noir may have become famous by the movie Sideways, but the tradition of wine growing and winemaking dates back to the Spanish missionaries but after prohibition many of the vines disappeared. In the early 1970s vines began to reappear and in just a few years, however unlikely, the region began to develop a reputation for producing exceptional Bugundian varietals challenging Oregon and New Zealand in the production of exceptional Pinot Noir.
The Santa Maria Valley and Santa Ynez Valley where the fruit for this wine was sourced have maritime climates influenced and tempered by the Pacific Ocean and soils of sand and clay loam which suits Pinot Noir exceptionally well.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Deep and dark ruby red with a dense but clear core that shows ruby highlighted streaks when held to the light. Along the edges, the color lightens slightly at the very edge from ruby to pink, and when swirled, slow and randomly spaced fat legs cling to the side of the glass.
Smell – Fresh and ripe aromas of red fruit including cherry, tart raspberry and strawberry are integrated with a subtle dusty and forest earthy component. Hints of toasted oak, subtle smokey herbs, vanilla and black tea also emerge.
Feel – Smooth and dry, this medium-to-full-bodied wine is broad on the palate with vibrant acidity and soft, but well structured tannins. A subtle tartness lingers on the back of the palate into the finish.
Taste – Rich and ripe red cherry, raspberry and strawberry fruit flavors are expansive on the palate but don’t overpower the subtle complex flavors of exotic spice, smokey herb, toasted vanilla oak, earthy notes and black tea.
Finish – Long and clean with this wines bright acidity holding onto the fruit, spice, earth and other complex flavors.
Conclusion – The 2008 Gioia Winery Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir is perhaps even better than the 2007 vintage which was a lovely wine and more fruit forward. Approachable and pleasant in its aromas and flavors, this fresh and youthful wine has plenty of complexity just waiting to be explored. Enjoy this wine now or cellar for up to 5 years to see how it evolves. We also have some top secret intelligence, that this wine was placed on the wine list at one of Los Angeles’ best Italian restaurants.
WINEMAKER INTEL BRIEFING DOSSIER
SUBJECT: Teri Love
WINE EDUCATION: Real-life experience – tasting wines all over the world; Apprenticing under Jim Porter of KLJ Cellars.
WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY: The fruit speaks for itself.
WINEMAKER QUOTE: “In wine there is truth”, Latin proverb
FIRST COMMERCIAL WINE RELEASE: September 2009
AGENT RED: Greetings, Teri. We are thrilled to be showing your 2008 Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara County, today. Thanks so much for taking some time to answer questions for our Operatives today.
TERI: Happy to be in this position.
RED: Was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?
TERI: Wine makes the most wonderful occasion even better.
RED: What wine or winemaker has most influenced your winemaking style?
TERI: Jim Porter – his palate and talent are enviable.
RED: Who do you make wine for?
TERI: Myself – if I am loving the taste chances are good that others will as well
RED: Please tell me a little bit about the wine we are featuring today.
TERI: Pinot Noir is one of the most complex of all varietals. Gioia’s 2008 Pinot Noir is full bodied and rich but not heavy – neither acidic nor tannic, with flavors of lavender, rosemary, raspberry & truffle – earthy & satisfying.
RED: What is your favorite pairing with today’s wine?
TERI: Mushroom & Parmesan risotto topped with crispy grilled salmon with a Pinot Noir reduction.
RED: In your opinion, what makes Santa Barbara County so special?
TERI: The topography of the central coast is what makes the Pinot Noir grape taste the way it does. The vines get lots of long sun exposure yet are spared the intense afternoon heat. The soil is chalky, containing calcium carbonate, which offers good drainage. Well drained soils, have a higher average temperature which assists ripening. The Pinot Noir grapes reflect the flavor of the soil more than other black grapes. The vineyard site is a critical factor in a beautiful Pinot Noir wine. Gioia’s Pinot Noir grapes come from Garey Ranch in Santa Maria California. The flavor reflects the soil, which is wonderfully evident in the aroma as well as the taste.
RED: What is occupying your time at the winery these days?
TERI: I am playing around with different white varietals, to develop a very different, yet flavorful and refreshingly unusual white blend.
RED: How would you recommend people approach your wines and wine in general?
TERI: With an open mind and an empty glass
RED: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
TERI: Enjoy and share the Gioia!
RED: Thank you so much for your time. We learned a lot about you – and your wine. Keep up the great work, we are big fans!
What the winery says
About This Wine:
The wine is comprised of two vineyards: Garey Ranch vineyard located in Santa Maria and Los Alamos Vineyard in Los Alamos. The grape clusters produced 158 gallons of grape juice per ton. Both blocks yielded 5.0 tons per acre.
We crushed and de-stemmed the grapes leaving 10% whole cluster. The grapes were cold soaked for 48 hours. After the must warmed to 52 degrees F, the one and one half ton bins were inoculated with RC212 cultured yeast. This strain is specific for its use in Pinot Noir for expression of varietal fruit and spice. Primary fermentation lasted seven days. The must was then pressed into 500 gallon tanks. The wine settled for tow days before racking into barrels. The wine was inoculated with OENOS cultures to start the secondary malolactic fermentation. We used 40% new French oak barrels. The wine aged in barrels for 11 months.
About The Winery:
GIOIA Italian for JOY
The inspiration for GIOIA was born from the joy my son Tyler brings to my life.
He studied abroad for a year in Florence, Italy, cherishing every second of his time there. Making the most of learning the language, traveling extensively…getting into the spirit of Italy.
GIOIA is in honor and memory of his strength, his loyalty, how fiercely he loved life, his family, his friends, animals and his ability to embrace each day with open arms.
Ty showed me by example, to enjoy a great glass of wine while appreciating a gorgeous view in a tropical locale, snow covered mountains, pounding surf, or just chillin at home.
Every moment was an occasion to be celebrated, whether traveling, racing down a ski slope, hiking with our dogs, scoring a perfect ace in tennis, smacking a golf ball, dunking a basketball, riding his bicycle for hours, working out at the gym, dining at his favorite Italian restaurants, shopping for the coolest clothes and Italian shoes, hanging with his friends, enjoying and appreciating his girlfriend….all the while, laughing at himself, never taking life too seriously.
To say he was a joy to be around is a supreme understatement.
Tyler was taken from this world, along with one of his closest childhood friends (Keith Naylor) at the age of 22 on November 12th, 2005.
He was doing another of his favorite pastimes, driving his Ducati. Keith was on the back of the bike that night. They were going to visit friends.
A motorist pulled out from a parked position on the side of the road, in front of them, with no warning. He made an illegal U-Turn across two sets of double yellow lines on the Pacific Coast Highway in Pacific Palisades, California. This act ended the lives of these beautiful, dynamic, vital, amazing young men.
My reason for sharing this tragedy, is to reach out to others. I implore everyone to welcome joy into your lives. Take nothing for granted.
Please honor and appreciate all of your relationships. Open your hearts and arms to all of your loved ones. Enjoy what life has to offer.
Share the GIOIA
LUMU (Tyler’s signature sign off) “Love U Miss U”
Tyler’s Mama – Teri Love
Varietals: 100% Pinot Noir; 85% Garey Ranch Vineyard, Clone 777 and 15% Los Alamos Vineyard Clone Pommard
Harvest Date: Sept. 25, 2008 Clone 777 and Sept. 28, 2008 Clone Pommard
Fermentation: 9 days RC212
Aging: 10 months in 40% French oak barrels.
Production: 75 Cases