Birichino "Saint Georges" Pinot Noir, 2015

Birichino "Saint Georges" Pinot Noir, 2015

28.00

Alex Krause and John Locke founded Birichino in Santa Cruz in 2008. Drawing on a combined four decades making wine in California, France, Italy, and beyond, they are focused on attaining the perfect balance of perfume, poise, and puckishness. Sourcing from a number of carefully farmed, family-owned, own-rooted 19th and early 20th century vineyards planted by and large in more moderate, marine-influenced climates, their preoccupation is to safeguard the quality and vibrance of their raw materials. Their preference is for minimal intervention, most often favoring native fermentations, employing stainless or neutral barrels, minimal racking and fining, and avoiding filtration altogether when possible. But most critically, their aim is to make delicious wines that give pleasure, revitalize, and revive. The St Georges Pinot Noir derives primarily from the elegant, floral, very small-berried pinot of the decades-old Besson plantings at the base of the Santa Cruz Mountains. To its register of expansive red floral notes Alex and John add the darkly fragrant Santa Cruz Mountains pinot from the steep slate, schist and sandstone site of Lilo, Arroyo Seco pinot on decomposed granite and shale, and the muscular, brooding, deeply-flavored old selections of pinot planted by the late Dick Graff from 1800’ up in the Chalone AVA at Antle Vineyard. These four sites together bring exceptionally textured depth and lifted aromatics to this dynamic Central Coast bottling. Fermentation averaged about 20% whole cluster, with a higher proportion of the Lilo and Antle lots left whole, and after several days in stainless and bins, native fermentation got going, and a preliminary blend was put down to cement tank and neutral barrel in October. The wine was racked just once when final barrel selections were made, prior to being bottled unfiltered. Aromas of red cherry and raspberry liqueur, at once racy and concentrated with wisps of candied violet & spice. The wine presents very lightly in the glass, showing pomegranate, sage and thyme on the delicate nose. There is solid grip to the sip, with tangy cranberry and a pinch of white pepper.

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