Good Morning Gentle Readers,
Thanks to the generosity of some friends, TWC had the opportunity to sample a 2003 Pinot Noir from Steel Creek Vineyards.
As we all know from Economics 101 and personal experience, the price of Pinot Noir has been bid up by the many recent converts, who dropped Merlot like a hot rock after spending a couple of hours with Miles and Jack. Jack's observation that the wine tastes pretty good ends up, I suspect, being more sage than anyone intended. That’s the real question in any glass. Does the wine taste good?
The 2003 Steel Creek Pinot sports a bronze medal from the San Francisco Chronicle’s Wine Competition in the under $14.00 Pinot Noir class. As it turns out, that isn’t quite as impressive as you might imagine, given that Meridian, Napa Ridge, and Sutter Home also received the Bronze for their Pinots.
Steel Creek is owned by Arroyo Seco Vineyards, which began life back in the mid-1980’s strictly as a vineyard producer for many well-known wineries. Steel Creek takes its name from the Arroyo Seco Creek (not to be confused with the the Arroyo Seco that is home to the Pasadena Rose Bowl) in Monterrey where Steel Head trout come to spawn. Well, I think that’s cool, but spawning trout isn’t exactly the vision I have in mind when I’m sipping a glass of red by the hearth and enjoying the company of Mrs TWC.
Like Jack, I thought the wine was pretty good. It's medium bodied, ripe with red and black fruit, long-lasting on the tongue with plenty of acid to balance the raspberry, black cherry, and plum flavors. It almost had a sparkling feel to it, sort of reminiscent of Mateus Rose from Portugal (there’s a blast from the past—back in the day, that was upscale wine for hot dates when Boone’s Farm just wouldn't do)
Enjoy this with the obvious; roast beef, pretty much anything Italian, and even with a well seasoned chicken dish. In addition, this is an ideal wine to set out early in the evening with mild cheeses and finger foods.
That's pronounced: Pee Know Nu Aw (like Nu Awlins)
The Wine Commonsewer