Kings Mountain Vineyard2003 Pinot Noir, Estate
(Santa Cruz Mountains)
Kings Mountain Vineyard is in the lovely town of Woodside, in the famous grape growing region which Paul Masson referred to as the Chain d’Or, or the ring of gold: the perfect ridgetop clime that favours Burgundian varieties. The vineyard at Kings Mountain was planted in 1992 on a private estate that has been producing wine grapes since the late 1800's. The vineyard consists of 520 vines on a quadrilateral, cordon trained, spur pruned system and is just over one acre. The vineyard contains Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Bordeaux varieties, and the total production is less than 400 cases per year. The Pinot is Clone 13 from Martini. Owner Alec Hutchinson hires Winemaker Brian Caseldon of Woodside Vineyards to make his wine.
This 2003 Pinot Noir captured my heart from the very first sniff. The effusive nose is simply beautiful, filled with cherries, ripe raspberries and marzipan candy. There is a hint of soft-needled pine, and a whiff of rosemary. The texture is fabulous, silky smooth like saltwater taffy, and the bright flavours of cranberries, elderberries, rhubarb and basil keep winding around meatier notes of Westphalian ham and grainy mustard. What great acidity this wine has: mouthwatering and succulent merely scratch the tip of this iceberg. As it goes towards the long, smooth toboggan-ride of a finish, the flavours turn to raspberry tart, and the juicy berries are relentless in their pursuit of total domination. This wine will capture your heart and remain with you long after, like the memory of that first really exhilarating ride on your new Flexible Flyer.
Reviewed April 22, 2008 by Laura Ness.
A wine writer and wine judge for major publications and competitions around the country, Laura Ness likens wine to the experience of music. She is always looking for that ubiquitous marriage of rhythm, melody, and flawless execution. What is good music? You know it when you get lost in it. What is good wine? It is music in your mouth.