2012 Claiborne & Churchill Central Coast Pinot Gris

SKU #1125257 Wine Enthusiast

 The winery’s 2012 dry whites offer plenty of value-driven quality, as usual. This Pinot Gris is crisp, clean and minerally, like cold snowmelt in the mouth. The citrus, honeysuckle, vanilla and white pepper flavors are a delight.  (8/ 2013)

Wine Spectator

 Very floral, with fresh and dried flower notes, showing a toasty nuance to the peach, apricot and melon flavors. Finishes crisp and refreshing. Drink now.  (8/ 2013)

K&L Notes

Founded in 1983 by Claiborne (Clay) Thompson and Fredericka Churchill, former teachers at the University of Michigan (Clay specialized in Old Norse Languages and Literatures and Fredericka taught German), the winery focuses on Alsatian varietals in the first straw bale winery in California. Grapes are purchased from premium growers around the cool Edna Valley, with 2/3 of the production being Dry Riesling and Dry Gewürztraminer. At Claiborne & Churchill, traditional European winemaking techniques prevail, including extensive use of barrel-fermentation and barrel-aging (even with Riesling and Gewürztraminer), minimal manipulation of juice and wine, "natural" or spontaneous fermentation using indigenous yeast, and limited use of SO2, all in the belief that the winemaker's task is to bring out the flavor and character that is latent in the grape. San Luis Obispo native Colby Parker- Garcia came on board in 2004 as Claiborne & Churchill's winemaker, learning from Clay all of the techniques required for the success of the unique varietals which are the winery's signature.

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Price: $19.99

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By: Joe Manekin |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 3/29/2013  | Send Email
This is a wonderful Pinot Gris, one of the best I've had in quite some time. Bright fruit combines with a fairly rich texture and very persistent flavors to make this wine one that should appeal to many different palates. Delicious and very fairly priced for the quality.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Pinot Gris

- Also known as Pinot Gris in France, where it originated as a mutation of Pinot Noir. The berries can vary in color from yellowish to bluish-violet producing wines that range from white to slightly pink. The most successful wines from the grape come from the Collio in Friuli (Northeast Italy), where the wines are light- to medium-bodied, crisp, dry and, because of their high acidity, complementary to the region's foods like speck, Prosciutto di San Daniele and polenta. In Alsace, where the grape takes a back seat to more popular varietals like Gewürztraminer and Riesling, it is generally rich and honeyed. Other successful plantings of Pinot Grigio exist in Austria, Germany, Hungary and Romania, with even smaller amounts planted in British Columbia, Australia, New Zealand and California.
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.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.8