Mission Codename Roads less traveled
“California’s Romanée-Conti” – Robert Parker
Yes, Bob said that. As if that’s not enough, he went on to write history as “Calera is one of the most compelling Pinot Noir specialists of not only the New World, but of Planet Earth” too.
Some big words.
Parker’s not alone. Galloni adds “One of the things that separates world-class wineries from the merely excellent is consistency across the entire range. That is exactly what readers will find at Calera. I can’t think of any of these wines I would not want to drink any day of the week… Simply put, readers won’t go wrong with any of these wines. I can’t recommend Calera highly enough.”
Calera’s legendary status is written in stone. Numerous Wine & Spirits Top-100 awards, Wine Spectator covers, Winemaker of the Year awards, are only SOME of the recognitions worth mentioning here. With the humblest of beginnings too…
It WAS the Summer of ’69 when Yale & Oxford graduate Josh Jensen bit by the wine bug, applied to DRC (Domaine de la Romanée-Conti) for a harvest job. He stayed a couple of years in Burgundy, working at Domaine Dujac too before returning to California, understanding exactly what it will take to make the best Pinot possible. Almost an impossible dream took him to Mt. Harlan, literally the middle of nowhere.
He’s a happily retired 77 today. His right hand since 2007, Mike Waller, who cut his teeth at Saintsbury, Beringer, and Chalone, still makes the wines. In 2017 Jensen sold Calera to Duckhorn, with the promise that nothing would change, and that promise was kept.
Make no mistake, this hails from the exact same winemaking school Calera built its reputation on with Mt. Harlan single-vineyards, but an approachable and affordable blend of select top vineyards including Pedregal, Laetitia, Bien Nacido, Sierra Madre, and Solomon Hills.
Jeb Dunnuck reporting for Wine Advocate says it best “readers looking for a classic, incredibly well-made Pinot Noir to buy by the case should look no further… don’t miss this fabulous effort and bravo to the Calera team for delivering this level of quality at the price.”
Astounding value - BACK THE TRUCK UP!
92 Points – Wine Entusiast
“Fresh boysenberry and cranberry aromas are wrapped in a rusty iron note on the nose of this bottling. There’s a tarry tone to the sip, which is firm in tension and offers flavors of black plum, lavender and cracked pepper.”
What the Winery Says
2018 Central Coast Pinot Noir
- Josh Jensen
- Mike Waller
- 100% Pinot Noir
- Central Coast
- San Benito, Monterey, Arroyo Grande, Santa Maria Valley
- Total acidity
- 5.7 g/L
- 12 months
- 10% new French oak