Light red with a fading rim. Musky red berries and cherry on the nose, with dried rose and mint notes adding complexity. Light-bodied red fruit flavors are brightened by a strong blood orange note and given spine by juicy acidity. Impressively lithe pinot with strong finishing spiciness and a hint of bitter cherry skin. This should age well and deserves at least another four or years of cellaring.
As a versatile wine, it is famed for having a red-wine palate profile and a white-wine style, making it popular with both red-wine and white-wine enthusiasts. It will go perfectly with everything as well as cheese, Peking duck or roasted beef tenderloin.
Established in 1973, Bien Nacido has earned a reputation as one of California’s grand cru vineyards. Planted in the low-vigor soils of the Santa Maria Valley, the vines face the full force of the wind and fog off the Pacific. The result is a Pinot Noir that balances richness and elegance, with blackberry and ripe strawberry flavors underscored by enlivening acidity and notes of green tea and spice.
Jim Clendenen, as the founder of the Au Bon Climat vineyard, is a California original whose long hair, cooking skills, bigger-than-life personality and wines are legendary. He developed an interest in wine after a trip to Bordeaux and Burgundy. He also was influenced after spending time in 1981 at Domaine des Comte Lafon and Maison Nicolas Potel. Founded Au Bon Climat in 1982, he quickly made Santa Barbara region on the map as a source of premium Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. His wines have always shown age ability, but often did not receive high scores in the wine press.