A most brilliant Pinot nose. Abrasive and vulgar, it combines the best quotients of match-head and cedar with the phosphorus and pitchy qualities of each–BOTH tied irreplaceably to deep succulent dark-cherry–and on this one: gobs of tertiary peeking through. The deep garnet with wide ruddy edges has a stemmy bulkhead and a slim waist, smoothly progressing down into full hips of curvy delight and comfort. Concentrations of licorice and sarsaparilla cause toe-curling sweet agony, and nowhere does the glorious chalky berry let go. To smell this wine is absolute HEAVEN–but let’s taste it.
Perfect supple fruit. A mouthfeel salty and silty but not silly. Serious as a heart-attack and deep as Crater Lake, it combines rocky power with flatland lushness, a picture of perfect grapes, lush vines, and excellent care & feeding–before AND after the pick. Just beginning to climb into a worn leather seat–framed in polished wood–the barnyard and bitter mold finesse and caress the plump fruit, melding into a cat’s tongue of tannin. It’s just stupidly good.
If you’re a pinot-freak, this wine will blow your mind. Literally one of the finest examples of mid-age SRH’s that have crossed my desk this year. And looking at the website: still a shocking number of these older vintages available. Absolute BARGAINS too.
2015 VELVET BEE Pinot Noir La Encantada VYD Santa Rita Hills Santa Barbara Co. 14.03