2012 Ponzi Vineyards Pinot Noir Review
One of the things I love about wine is that, in a way, it can act as a time capsule. No, I’m not saying opening a bottle of wine will remind you of what gas prices where or what was America’s top college alternative album was for the vintage year. But a bottle of wine can tell you a little about the weather for the producing vineyard in which it was grown, or possibly, if there was something big that happened that year, like a fire near the vineyard. A vineyard that saw heavy rain around harvest time could be troubled with diluted grapes that leave wines somewhat lacking, or infected with any one of several diseases. An unseasonably warm summer could lead to a wine that is overloaded with fruit notes and a higher than desired alcohol level. These are just some of the differences that could occur in a given wine year over year and thus leave an imprint of the season in each vintage. An easier way to describe this is vintage variation.
Tasting wines year over year is a fun and quite educational experience. Ideally, you’d taste them side by side to get a good sense of what was different over the years and how those differences affected what’s in your glass. When you can’t taste them side to side, tasting notes are your next best option. Last year, I reviewed the 2011 Ponzi Tavola Pinot Noir. Where that vintage suffered through most of the growing season until a late season warm spell saved the vintage. The 2012 vintage started off wet (lowering yields), but the summer and fall were near perfect conditions. The 2012 vintage has been hailed as an incredible vintage. Let’s see how these differences play out…
The 2012 Ponzi Vineyards Pinot Noir Review
Color: Ruby red, thin in color with no glass staining.
Nose: Cherries, pencil shavings, some roasted chili pepper notes and a touch of cedar chips. The nose on this wine is beautiful.
Flavor: If this wine was an actor it would be Billy Dee Williams, ’cause it is as smoooth as it gets. The nose translates to the palate with notes of bright cherries, cola, slight cedar notes, and a hint of that pepper spice pokes through. The finish is exquisite, long with a subtle hit of tannins, and cherry notes for days.
Bottom Line: Simply put, this is an amazing bottle of wine that you should pick up without question. Sitting in the $40 range it’s not exactly a weekday quaffer for most, but put this one in the line-up for a special weekend date night and you cannot go wrong.