A new bottling I quickly visited last weekend at The Garagiste Festival in Solvang, but nice to have some for closer consideration. I have no idea what DNW stands for, and it doesn’t appear to be vineyard-specific like most of his black-label wines. An almost-Syrah purple-blue in the glass, transparent and beautiful. Really tight on opening, more Syrah-like tendencies not exploding “Pinot” into your face. I don’t decant a lot of Pinots, but here seems to be a candidate. S l o w l y, the smoky savory blossoms, with the tell-tale musty elegance and earthy funk of the variety gradually forth-coming. Still, it’s a bright, sharp being, with the fruit in the nose a fresh, forward apple and plum, ridiculously young and taut with subtle vibrancy. It *almost* wants to go Jolly Rancher, but milk chocolate and almond stop it short of frivolity. An interesting wine, and it will be equally interesting to see where it falls in the price-point line-up of his roster. The labeling would denote a special bottling, but the profile suggests a lesser-expensive general blend from the AVA.
In the mouth, it is delicate in many instances but powerful in others. Sharp and acidic–peppery around the edges–the thin berry a slight slather over copious match-head and structure. Green and grating over the middle, Vit. C stings of rose-hip and acerola pound on tart raspberry and brittle apricot, conceding to a mouthfeel distinctly raspy, with acid and mineral specifics driving the bus down roads where complexity exists–but you have to look hard for it. I’m guessing something down around 13-oh, but there is a depth of spirit arguing for full ripeness. The finish is highlighted with a forever-broken-stem brushiness and an immense chalky bristle. This is the longest-aging wine yet from this producer–and the least-friendly on release. A true 1% wine, buy a case and drink one a year. In fact: don’t even open the first bottle for another year. Yeah… you won’t be able to do that, I know.
2021 DUSTY NABOR ‘DNW/SRH’ Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills Santa Barbara Co. 14.0