2010 Los Pilares San Diego County Grenache Carignan Red Blend
San Francisco Chronicle Top 100 Wines of 2012: "The partners in Los Pilares had a simple idea: show the pleasures of San Diego's wine country through less-intrusive winemaking and the quality of great mature-vine fruit. The Grenache is from 1,400 feet in rural Ramona, while the Carignane is from a ranch in Pauma Valley. Together they combine bright berry fruit with a savory, carefree side; think oregano and rye seed. With the 2011 on its way, San Diego has itself a great homegrown table wine." After living abroad in France and Spain, Michael Christian and Coleman Cooney returned to their hometown in San Diego in the 1990s to plant an experimental vineyard at the foot of Viejas Mountain. Finding similarities between San Diego’s backcountry and the hills of Southern Europe, they sought to make a wine that they most wanted to drink - a wine that tasted of nothing but the vineyard. Their first bottling in 2010 is a blend of old-vine Grenache and Carignan. The grapes are sourced from high-altitude vineyards in Ramona and Pauma Valley, where the soil contains much crushed granite. These vineyards are unirrigated and untouched by chemical fertilizers and pesticides. The grapes are picked before they become overly ripe, resulting in a true ‘vin de soif’ - intensely aromatic with a low alcohol level (12.5%).