Our corner of Northern California is responsible for some of the best Pinot Noirs in the world. Pinot Noir grapes thrive in the low fertility soils and Mediterranean climates in several of our local AVAs, including Russian River Valley and Anderson Valley. Winemakers in the area use these world-class grapes to produce many outstanding wines including Pinot Noir, sparkling wines, white Pinot Noir, and Rosé.
About Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir is usually a light red still wine. People unfamiliar with this varietal may expect the lighter color will mean less flavor, yet the full and complex flavors will leave them surprised. The flavor profile can shift as it ages — what starts out as tart red fruit mellows out over time. Pinot Noir can be paired with many different foods; it is light enough to be served with fish and can also highlight heartier food like grilled meat.
Russian River Valley AVA
The Russian River Valley is a highly sought after appellation for growing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes. This AVA is made up of 15,000 planted acres situated in the geographical heart of Sonoma County. Located just 10 miles away from the Pacific Ocean, the weather is characterized by morning fog, warm days and pleasant evenings. The relatively cool weather encourages grapes to ripen slowly, establishing balanced acidity and a distinctive flavor profile.
Anderson Valley AVA
Pinot Noir thrives in the unique cool weather microclimates of Anderson Valley. A number of wineries in this region produce world-class sparkling and still wines; and several ultra-premium wine growers sell their sought-after grapes to winemakers in Napa, Sonoma and elsewhere in the USA.
While summer days are long and dry, with temperatures occasionally topping 85 degrees, a cooling fog rolls down the valley most evenings, slowing the vines’ metabolic activity. This daily Pacific Coast influence is responsible for a long growing season, which allows the grapes to ripen evenly and develop elegant flavors.
Check out two of our properties that will bring you to the heart of these premier Pinot Noir regions.
Wild Iris at Tumbling McD Ranch