Dinner with 3 guys, 3 champagnes, 3 Pinots

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Blake Brown
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Joined: Fri Oct 01, 2010 10:36 pm
Location: Santa Barbara

Dinner with 3 guys, 3 champagnes, 3 Pinots

Post by Blake Brown » Sun Sep 30, 2018 3:31 pm

Three of us enjoyed a fine night out with dinner at a local Santa Barbara fav, Black Sheep. I`d been there with my dinner group on a 2 or 3 occasions, but these guys are resident patrons and I discovered why. The chef is simply amazing.

To compliment the exquisite creative cuisine, we each brought a champagne and a Pinot Noir although one or the other was the initial suggestion, but we all celebrate the passion of sharing wine and without knowing the other`s intention, brought one of each.

NV FALLAT-DART LES HAUT de CLOS du MONT- 80% Chardonnay, 20% Pinot Noir.; a blend of 1999, 2000 and 2002 and vinified on oak; disgorged Oct. 2017; this is creme brûlée in liquid form; honeysuckle, butter and vanilla are blended in with pineapple and peach fruit with all being delivered in a nice light creamy texture; this had lovely balance and was truly delicious.

2008 MOET & CHANDON GRAND VINTAGE BRUT ROSE- this is a great palate prep for drinking most new world Pinots as it captures the lighter red fruit profile of raspberry, red cherry and strawberry in spades; consistent with other bottles, the fruit had a generous amount of spice blended in; past mid palate, some citrus notes appeared; it is very fruit forward in its youth which I anticipate will balance out with time; 46% Pinot Noir, 32% Chardonnay, 22% Pinot Meunier aged for 7 years on the lees and although seemingly sweet to me, it is dosed low at 5 g/p/l.

2006 LAUNOIS SPECIAL CLUB BLANC de BLANC BRUT- made from grand cru fruit sourced from 2 50+ year old parcels, the best of the house's vines, one from Les Chenets on the southern side of Oger and the other from Les Justices on the boarder of Cramant and Oiry; it has gone through 100% ML, but sees no oak; this super rich and full bodied treat gave up ginger, caramel, butterscotch, honey and mineral accented peach and apricot, all in the typical slightly oxidized house style.

2006 {OROGENY} VINEYARDS GREEN VALLEY RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY PINOT NOIR- my first taste of anything from this producer and it was a good albeit interesting one; initially, there was a metallic component in the nose that fortunately blew of within 10 minutes or so and gave way to much more pleasant spicy red cherry with a touch of pepper; with more time, bing cherry and jujube {from childhood memories} showed up along with distinct blueberry notes; and then later on, black currant and plum came in; I do not recall another wine morphing through so many stages, but it landed in a good place and was satisfying all along.

2000 BROGAN CELLARS RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY RESERVE PINOT NOIR- 13.8% abv; from my dear friend, Margi Williams Wierenga, learned daughter of Burt Williams of Williams Selyem fame, this bottle illustrated the typical balanced profile I’ve grown to know and appreciate from her age worthy wines; it hit all the right spots that I prefer in new world Pinot Noir from the nose through the tail; it had a super inviting medley of red and dark fruit aromatics which continued on the palate, wondrous mouthfeel, and a long sustained pleasing finish.

As an aside and to answer a frequent question, how did this winery get its name? Margi named it after her paternal grandmother.

2005 AU BON VAN VLIET SANTA MARIA VALLEY PINOT NOIR- 67% le Bon Climat Vineyard, 37% Bien Nacido Vineyard; produced by Jim Clendenen, The Mind Behind, of Au Bon Climat; this was brought by one of the other guys who knows my closeness to Jim and who was unfamiliar with this label as I am as well; I’m suspecting Jim made this for someone special and did a take off on his label which loosely translated means “a well exposed vineyard”; nonetheless, it was really good wine and mindful of some of ABCs better releases like Isabelle and Knox which are blends that typically include fruit from these 2 vineyards; this had a spicy/ peppery component that I associate with Bien Nacido, and in this case, beautifully accented the red and black cherry fruit.

I will inquire as to what is “behind” the name of this wine and get back.

Dinner with 3 guys with 3 champagnes and 3 Pinots made for a divine evening. Even though we were not the Holy Trinity, we were bonded in the spirit.


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