Chardonnay grown in Monterey County is distinctive and can be picked out of any blind tasting by its signature trait of tropical flavors and/or stone fruit flavors. The intensity of fruit, directed with winemaking preference for style, balanced with malolactic fermentation, produce wines that are exceptionally rich in flavor and deep in structure. Clonal selection flavors, malolactic fermentation, oak profiling and a layer of acidity exhibit themselves so that harmony is achieved throughout the tasting experience.
In comparison to the wines of other growing regions, Monterey Chardonnay will be exhibit much more developed fruit than a European style due to the extended growing season provided by the Blue Grand Canyon. In contrast to Chardonnays grown in new world regions, Monterey Chardonnay will generally be more layered in flavors and subtle in oak.
The grapes are grown, picked on flavor and barrel fermented with one simple concept in mind, make wine to be enjoyed. Pairing by style matches best with fresh Monterey County produce and seafood.
100 % Pure Monterey Chardonnay will be youthful straw yellow in color, have exceptional clarity and possess a nose that is vibrant with lime, apple, pear and perfumed vanilla with subtle floral notes. The first taste often exhibits the range of tropical fruit flavors including lemon, pineapple, mandarin, grapefruit and lime followed by a mid pallet of banana, mango, coconut, pear, apricot, peach and melon.
Generally, malolactic fermentation and a preference for minimal oak profiling adds flavor nuances of cream, custard, vanilla and butterscotch that heightens the mid pallet experience. Finish characteristics demonstrate a level of acidity that makes the tasting experience bright and refreshing. This acidity is unique and shows the true characteristics of the soils of Monterey. Alcohol is typically in the range 13.5-14.5 and is a defining characteristic.
The defining characteristic of Monterey Pinot Noir is balance. Fruit flavors, structure and minerality all exhibit themselves so that no single element is deemed more important than another. The grapes are grown, picked on flavor and barrel aged with this concept in mind. Typical Monterey Pinot Noir is made from a blend of clonal selections that add interest and complexity to the wine. Each wine maker follows their instinct and personal preferences to craft a distinctive flavor profile and style for their brand that satisfies their true belief in how Pinot Noir is to be enjoyed and what the grapes and harvest year have offered.
In comparison to the wines of other growing regions, Monterey Pinot Noir will be more fruit forward than a European style due to the longer growing season provided by the Blue Grand Canyon. In contrast to Pinot Noirs grown in new world regions, Monterey Pinot Noir will be more balanced, layered in flavors and subtle in palette. Monterey Pinot Noir should never be mistaken for Merlot, Cabernets or Zinfandels. It will always be defined by the Pinot Noir grape and what the Monterey growing region allows.
Pure Monterey Pinot Noir will exhibit a fruit profile driven by bing to black cherry, rhubarb and vine grown, dark, bramble cluster fruit, often with a signature spice component, that is determined by the clonal selections and soils in the vineyards. The minerality component is the blend of acidity and alcohol that gives the wine its structure. This allows the fruit characteristics to show and provides the medium for the enjoyment of the wine and its exceptional ability to pair with almost any food. Alcohol will most likely be in the 13.5-14.5 range, but is not usually a defining characteristic.
Monterey Pinot Noir has gained in popularity over the past few years due to its ability to consistently deliver highly rated wines of unique characteristics driven by the growing season. This has made grapes from this region the key component for winemakers wishing to express true nature of Pinot Noir in their wines.