Notes of black cherries, loamy soil, kirsch liqueur, Asian spice and a floral element. The wine is an outstanding, beautifully fresh Pinot Noir with plenty of black raspberry and kirsch liqueur-like notes.
Morlet Family Vineyards in St. Helena is truly a Franco-American enterprise. The estate was founded in 2006 when Luc and Jodie Morlet began making their own wine. But the roots of the estate go back generations to the Champagne region of France, where Luc Morlet grew up working on his family’s Pinot Noir and Champagne domaine. Luc later earned degrees in enology and business, and worked at wine estates in all the regions of France before moving to Napa Valley in 1993 to work as a winemaker. He met and married Jodi, a Californian, and worked for Napa’s Newton Vineyard and Peter Michael Winery before starting his own production. The Morlets own eight acres and have leases on another 12 acres. Their very limited production Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon have won outstanding reviews from wine writers. Robert M. Parker Jr. rated a recent Morlet Chardonnay at 96-100 pts and said it “may be one of the all-time great Chardonnays ever made in California.”
Sonoma Coast AVA runs from San Pablo Bay in the south to Mendocino County in the north. It includes 7,000 vineyard acres and earned AVA status in 1987. Its proximity to the Pacific Ocean means it gets double the rainfall of nearby inland appellations and the ocean gives the appellation a relatively cool climate. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir can thrive in these conditions, and there are numerous producers making critically acclaimed Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
This red wine is relatively light and can pair with a wide variety of foods. The grape prefers cooler climates and the wine is most often associated with Burgundy, Champagne and the U.S. west coast. Regional differences make it nearly as fickle as it is flexible.