2011 Morgan "Twelve Clones" Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

SKU #1117355 90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 (43% new French oak): Dark red. Sexy dark berries, dried cherry and oak spices on the nose. On the palate, bitter cherry and cola flavors pick up a peppery nuance with air. Youthfully taut on the finish, which features a bitter chocolate note and silky, even tannins. Nicely balanced pinot, with an interesting interplay of sweetness and piquancy that will serve very well with a wide range of foods.  (12/ 2013)

K&L Notes

Morgan's 'Twelve Clones' Pinot is composed of fruit from some of the Santa Lucia Highlands best sites, including Morgan's own organically farmed Double L Estate vineyard (45% of the final cuvée). The relatively cool and wet 2011 growing season pushed back the harvest and finally allowed for full ripening over the month of October. This realized a Pinot Noir with deep color and rich fruit and spice characteristics with fresh acidity and moderate alcohol levels. The similar 2010 vintage was named one of the "Top 100 Wines of 2012" by Wine Spectator. This bottling was aged for ten months in 43% new French oak. From the winery: "It displays aromas of plum, dark chocolate and cola. Flavors of blackberry and cherry are complemented by notes of leather and black tea. Perfectly poised fruit/acid balance make this incredibly food-versatile. It is a wonderful accompaniment to roast chicken and grilled salmon, as well as almost any duck, beef or lamb preparation."

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Price: $25.99

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Varietal:

Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.
Country:

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.
Sub-Region:

California

- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Santa Lucia Highlands

Alcohol Content (%): 14.3