At this point I think it’s probably obvious that most wines that I review are European, or Old World style. However, sometimes I get a crave for an American style wine - something bigger and very satisfying. Last night was one of those nights.
The wine was the 2008 Pahlmeyer Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir. I’ve heard only good things about Pahlmeyer but had never tasted any of their wines. Dinner was lamb, and so a Pinot Noir to pair properly with lamb must have some bigger characteristics that we’d find in some Burgundy style Pinots.
Pahlmeyer 2008 Pinot Noir is a fairly “big” Pinot Noir but not quite as big as others I’ve tasted from California, which is perfect for me, since I tend toward wines generally lighter than what we normally see coming from California, but it was certainly big enough to pair with the lamb. It’s a medium to dark red color, with characteristics of stewed red fruits such as raspberry and red plum, and some cherry vanilla and a bit of cinnamon, and earthiness, and lots of smoky notes, which is what I love in a California Pinot. It has nice structure, with good acidity giving it a clean feel, and smooth tannins, giving it elegance and soft texture, and a long, lasting finish. Pahlmeyer Pinot Noir definitely met my expectations and it was a wonderful treat last night.