Byron Monument Pinot Noir 2012
|Region||California, Central Coast, Santa Maria Valley|
The winery's top-end bottling, this presents rich aromas of black cherry and blackberry pie, with sweet hickory smoke, pipe tobacco and graphite shavings. The expertly balanced palate is quite broad, with ripe pomegranate and raspberry fruit, yet it's not jammy at all, thanks to black clove, Earl Grey tea and violet candy. Ample tannins and acidity enliven the mouth.
Highly distinctive, deliciously rich and focused, with flavors of anise, blackberry, cedar, pencil lead, graphite and black licorice. Deftly balanced, this maintains a tight focus and emphasis on pure flavors. Drink now through 2023. 412 cases made.
The 2012 Pinot Noir Monument is a blend of the best barrels, with 80% being barrel-fermented, following by 15 months in 100% new French oak. Beautiful stuff, it offers awesome cassis, toasted spice, licorice and sweet oak to go with a medium to full-bodied, rich, concentrated and textured profile that keeps you coming back to the glass. While you can see the oak here, it's high class and perfectly integrated into the wine. I'd drink bottles over the coming 3-5 years, but I suspect it will evolve for longer.