This 100% Pinot Noir cuvee is from grapes grown within the cool microclimate of the Sonoma Coast AVA, on select vineyards in the western portion of Carneros and the Petaluma Gap. The cool windy climate and low yield of these vineyards allow Pinot Noir grapes to mature slowly while retaining their natural acidity, with bright flavors of red cherries, raspberries and spice. We showcase the elegant side of Pinot Noir by aging in large neutral oak casks and older French oak barrels to keep new oak flavors to a minimum. Lively acidity on the finish makes it an ideal accompaniment to grilled fish and fowl or barbecued meats.
Founded in 1980, Schug Carneros Estate Winery is the showcase and life-long dream of one of California’s most celebrated winemakers, Walter Schug. Family owned and operated, the winery is a reflection of many decades of Schug family involvement in the production of fine wines in Europe and California; both Walter and his wife, Gertrud, came from distinguished winemaking families of Germany.
After creating many of the industry’s fine wine benchmarks at Joseph Phelps Vineyards, Walter Schug went on to pursue his life-long passion; the fragile Pinot Noir grape. In order to capture the distinctive character of the finest French Burgundies, he chose the Carneros Appellation for the establishment of a 50 acre Estate vineyard and winery.
Nestled on a hilltop in the midst of their Estate Vineyard in Carneros, the winery exhibits the rich European heritage of the Schug family. The Post and Beam architecture reminiscent of the Rhine River Valley, and underground barrel-aging caves provide a uniquely European setting for the tasting of Schug’s fine Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs. The experience is enhanced by sweeping views of the Sonoma Valley and the San Francisco Bay.
The unique style of Schug Pinot Noir and Chardonnay captures traditional European values, where wine and food go hand in hand. Schug Carneros Estate Winery combines old world understanding and tradition with the most advanced winemaking technology available today. By using only the finest grapes available in California, and maintaining traditional European winemaking values, these wines have gained acceptance worldwide as true contemporary classics. Today, the Schug legacy is carried on through children; Axel, Claudia and Andrea.
@losthighwayz Schug makes really nice wines. They joined us for one of the tour dinners—ddeuddeg says, it was the first one. ddeuddeg and I visited their tasting room on our own on one of our visits to Sonoma.
The golden ticket. It was a Pinot from Schug which I had never tasted so this was going to be fun. I must admit, I’m a little spoiled as Clark’s 2007 RRV Pinot is amazing and the one I’ve truly enjoyed the most. My heart belongs to big, bold, dry, full bodied reds, but a nice light refreshing wine in the summer is a treat so I was excited.
As I was busy getting ready for the next adventure, I enlisted the assistance of a few friends to partake in the tasting. The bottle is clean and soothing with just the name and varietal. Upon opening, there isn’t much scent of alcohol. We all smell berry, but the scent is light and not overpowering. Swirling in the glass we immediately get long legs and the color is light red, cherry colored. Upon initial taste, all of us got raspberry and a darker fruit, maybe cherry. One taster said vanilla. One said earth. I got a hint of spice on the finish with a bit of acidity, but no vanilla or earth. No heat. It was light and dry. Very refreshing. Waiting about an hour, the scent was stronger and the flavors seemed to get deeper.
Food? I thought the light dryness and acidity might compliment something spicy so I ordered wings. Jackpot. All three of us thought the wine was fantastic with the wings and really brought out the flavors.
One friend had brought his bottle of Pappy Van Winkle as I’m a huge rye drinker and he’d been promising me a pour of this infamous whisky for a while. Not a huge bourbon fan as it’s usually far too sweet for my palate, it smelled amazing had hints of nuts and was truly spicy with a dry finish. I digress, but there’s a reason to the story. Interestingly, the lingering spice of the Pappy with the very next sip of the Pinot was amazing. He had also brought red hots (back to our childhood days of candy turning our tongues all red). The spicy cinnamon with the Pinot was great. Spice seems to complement this Pinot extremely well and bring out its magic.
I left the bottle corked on the counter overnight for a taste the next day. Upon opening, I smelled alcohol. That’s weird. None the first day. Upon taste, there was now heat and less fruit.
I enlisted @james to try a taste so I passed him the remainder of the bottle. His thoughts were smoky and possibly blackberries. He tasted the acidity as well and said it was definitely a Pinot. He enjoyed it, although these days he seems to be enjoying the heavier cabs more than lighter reds.
I think this is a nice Pinot. Dry and light. Not pretentious and very inviting. Great case price. I would drink this with spicy food and finish the first day. If I ever have wings, this is now the beverage of choice. Hands down. It’s a great summer, sitting on the patio having a beverage and some wings with friends wine, although we were repairing some loose legs on a table and it was pouring down rain when we were sipping. It works for that too. Thank you @winedavid49 and @ariana for the opportunity to rat.
I am so pleased to be picked as a lab rat! Thank you to everyone at Casemates!
Picked up the bottle from fed ex and popped it in the fridge to chill. My wife poured a glass for herself, me, and a friend who also likes Pinot (shout-out to B-Hizzle!). We all agreed that this is a well integrated wine that really shows what Pinot is about. The flavor is mostly of cherry and other light berries. The oak is almost non-existent which is perfect for me. Just a hint of oak and leather and a subtle herb note that I cant place. Very good wine. We all agreed that if this sells at $15-$18 that would be a great QPR.
Even better than day one. This wine has a beautiful bouquet and the tart cherry is even more pronounced. There is also a minerality that I didn’t notice last night. Good stuff.
@mrn1 Just saw this!! I’d take 2 if you have any to split off. I bought the Y Rousseau Colombard, Phohibido Rose of Cab Sauvignon, Peterson Mendo Blendo Red Blend, and Prima Materia Petite Sirah if your interested in an option to trade.