David Noyes Wines

2007 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir •Crane Vineyard

California: Sonoma County: Sonoma Coast

Offer Expired:Jun 25, 2011 at 11:59 pm
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Mission Codename: Since 1850

Operative: Agent White

Objective: Return to our friend, David Noyes, and retrieve his fantastic Crane Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir.

Mission Status: Accomplished!

Current Winery: David Noyes Wines

Wine Subject: 2007 Crane Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Winemaker: David Noyes

Backgrounder: Since 1970, winemaker David Noyes has made fine wines, all around the world, and for some incredible wineries. Early in his career, David made wine at Ridge and Kunde Estate. In 2006, David left Kunde to launch his own label. Today, as then, David is especially well-known for his delicious Zinfandels and Pinot Noirs, and we are proud to bring you David’s wonderful 2007 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir.

The Sonoma Coast AVA, established in 1987, is the area directly adjacent to the Pacific coastline of Sonoma County. The ocean’s influence causing a cooler, higher rainfall and foggy climate most influences the vineyards of this region, many of which have exceptional views of the mighty Pacific. These factors cause grapes to mature and ripen more slowly which is idea for Pinot Noir. The region is approximately 750 square miles with about 7,000 acres under vine.

Wine Spies Tasting Profile:

Look – Deep and pretty ruby red with darker burgundy hints in its clear core and pales slightly along the edges. When swirled, evenly spaced tears descend randomly and broaden as the sink to the wine below.

Smell – Rich and aromatic with earthy and spiced red fruit including red cherry with notes of dark raspberry and even hints of strawberry. Classic earthy undergrowth, black tea and sweet tobacco blend with toasted oak and vanilla notes inviting a sip.

Feel – Smooth and dry, this full-bodied Pinot has a sturdy but supple structure with finely grained tannins, lively acidity and dark earthy minerality that dries as the wine glides over the palate.

Taste – Dark red fruit flavors blends with hot spice and earthy undertones providing a classic Pinot flavor profile. Bold and rich with black tea, toasted oak, and hints of cola blend with floral and savory components adding depth and complexity.

Finish – Long and clean with this wine’s rich and ripe red fruit slowly fading leaving behind toasted oak, mouth drying tannins and earthy flavors.

Conclusion – The 2007 David Noyes Wines Crane Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir is a fantastic Pinot that bridges the gap very well between the generally more fruit forward California style and the subtle complexity found in Burgundy’s Cote D’or. A bountiful nose of red fruit with great complexity, smooth and balanced on the palate, great depth of flavor, and a finish that begs for another sip – what else could you want? We paired this lovely wine with pan-grilled pork tenderloin seasoned with a Latin inspired verde dry rub and a fresh mango and berry salsa. Enjoy now or for the next five years.

Mission Report:


SUBJECT: David Noyes

WINE EDUCATION: Ridge Vineyards and UC Davis

CALIFORNIA WINE JOB BRIEF: Currently making my own wine, working, consulting…

WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY: If it tastes good, they will drink it.

WINEMAKER QUOTE: Wish I could encapsulate the numinous quality of wine in a single sentence…glad I cannot…

FIRST COMMERCIAL WINE RELEASE: Under my own label, 2001 Dutton Ranch Pinot Noir…first commercial vintage I had a hand in…1970…oh that’s a long time ago!


AGENT RED: Greetings, David. We are thrilled to be showing your 2007 Crane Vineyard Pinot Noir today. Thanks so much for taking some time to answer questions for our Operatives today.

DAVID: Thank you! It is always a pleasure to spend time with the wine world’s secret agents.

RED: Was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?

DAVID: Not really, I like to say I grew up in Palo Alto during the 60’s and wine was just one of the mind and mood altering paths we all enjoyed… Wine begins in the earth—there’s nothing more grounded than farming, yet, once in the bottle its as subject to fad, fancy and folly as any item of fashion or style. I find the spectrum fascinating.

RED: What wine or winemaker has most influenced your winemaking style?

DAVID: Both David Bennion and Paul Draper of Ridge had profound effects—the Dionysian and Apollonian, as someone said. Wine as a sensual product and an expression of earthy pleasure as well as a calling, a profession and a practice…

RED: Who do you make wine for?

DAVID: For myself, of course, but I enjoy pleasing people, so, for others…I like to make wine that I believe most people can relate to, can enjoy sensually…That said there’s also a story that appeals to the emotions and a respect for tradition and for style that can appeal to the intellect.

RED: Please tell me a little bit about the wine we are featuring today.

DAVID: My 2007 Crane vineyard represents a selection of my favorite lots from the Crane Ranch, located just below Santa Rosa at the base of Crane Canyon Road. 2007 gave us almost ideal ripening weather, even, warm days, not sudden heat spikes and the grapes rewarded us with beautifully balanced wines, delicious almost from the day of bottling. After 3 years in bottle it is just coming to a peak of development—the lively fruit and black tea aromas and flavors softening into the cinnamon, vanilla and toast background derived from the winemaking.

RED: What is your favorite pairing with today’s wine?

DAVID: I love it with lamb—I had it with a garlic stuffed leg of lamb w/Moroccan spices, pilaf and eggplant, (not my cooking!), which was delicious.

RED: In your opinion, what makes the Crane Vineyard so special?

DAVID: The Crane family farm in a unique area—farmers in the area since 1858 they developed the ‘Crane’ melon, a wonderfully aromatic, late-ripening, low acid, orange fleshed melon that does well with their combination of heavy black soils, warm afternoons and cool evenings that work well for pinot noir as well! Just South of Santa Rosa their vineyards are just in line with the North edge of the ‘Petaluma’ gap and benefit from the daily marine breeze that comes down from Bodega Bay.

They cool nights preserve color and aromatics in the fruit while the heavy soils retain water and allow for dry farming, (no irrigation), which keeps vegetative vigor in check—this favors berry and fruit flavor over herbal or weedy ones. The warm afternoons allow for good ripening, both of flavor and tannins, so the tannins, while present are soft more like black tea than raw twigs…

RED: What is occupying your time at the winery these days?

DAVID: Selling wine! More to your point, I’ve finished my blend of the 2010 Crane pinot—most of the wine goes to my Sonoma Coast bottling, we’ve just bottled some 2009 Merlot and Zin and I’m crossing my fingers for good weather for the rest of the summer.

RED: How would you recommend people approach your wines and wine in general?

DAVID: I like, currently, the metaphor of fashion…choose your wine as you would choose your clothes, or whatever it pleases you to make a choice in…ultimately it is a all matter of choice. Please, drink my wine as an homage to the tradition of zinfandel winemaking in California, or because it tastes good!

RED: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?

DAVID: I think I’ve said enough…

RED: Thank you so much for your time. We learned a lot about you – and your wine. Keep up the great work, we are big fans!

Wine Spies Winery Check:

The location of the tasting room where David’s incredible wines can be found can be seen in this <A HREF=“http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCP&cp=qd27g94smzc2&style=b&lvl=1&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&scene=8200289&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&encType=1”

What the Winery Says

About This Wine:

We produce our Crane Vineyard pinot noir entirely from fruit grown by the Crane family on their property located South of Santa Rosa at the base of Crane Canyon. The site benefits from cool breezes that sweep down through the ‘Bloomfield Gap’ from Bodega Bay most afternoons and cool the fruit during the afternoon and evenings. Shallow alluvial soils and the Cranes’ commitment to dry farming, (no or minimal irrigation), ensure concentrated flavors of raspberry and black tea—classic low production pinot noir quality.

I produced the 2007 wine entirely from Dijon clones 115, 667 and 777, low producing clones that typically give excellent fruit forward, complex wines.

Aromas and flavors of black raspberries combine with those of black tea, pepper, and vanilla; in the mouth these expand and mix with deeper flavors of toast and caramel. The finishes reinforces the initial impressions of ripe red fruits, supported by cinnamon and vanilla.

We drink wine for many reasons. The history of the Crane family, who first came to Santa Rosa, from the California gold fields in the late 1850’s and who later, during the 1920’s developed a sweet, aromatic melon that bears their name add much to my enjoyment of this wine. Wine is a metaphor for the mysteries of time
and place; the Crane Vineyard pinot speaks eloquently to the history of the people, farming and agricultural
development in Sonoma County—and, it tastes very good!

Food Pairing: This pinot is robust enough to pair with rare beef, but try it with duck breast as well!

About The Winery:

I founded DAVID NOYES WINES to fulfill my life-long dream to provide wines that connect us to the natural world, to winemaking traditions, and that provide tangible expressions of the mysteries of time, place and transformative experience. More specifically, (and less poetically), my wines provide unique expressions of pinot noir and other varietals from selected Sonoma County vineyards. My winemaking techniques are selected to minimize handling and maximize the individuality, flavor and balance of each lot.

My winemaking career began in the cellar at Ridge Vineyards in 1970, between then and now I’ve worked in Monterey, Mendocino, Livermore, France and Sonoma Valley. In 1989 I began work with the Kunde family to create Kunde Estate Winery; I started my own label in 2001, and in 2006 left Kunde to devote myself entirely to DAVID NOYES WINES.

DAVID NOYES WINES consists of myself, my wife Grace, and our generous family and friends. We produce small lots of pinot noir, zinfandel, chardonnay and tocai friulano from selected Sonoma County vineyards located in the Russian River, Dry Creek, and Sonoma Valleys. These wines express the character of the vineyard, vintage, and my own esthetic judgment, informed through over 30 years of experience in the creation of noteworthy, well-regarded, premium wines; they offer distinct personality, balance and an excellent complement to fine cuisine.

WINEMAKING STYLE – My wines are meant to accompany food; neither wine nor food need overpower the palate to provide an overwhelming experience! The aim is for a ‘rich, balanced style’, full-flavored wines that express the best of our California fruit, yet do not overwhelm with alcohol, extract or oak. I find such wines offer more individual expression, better pairings with food and more personality.

GRACE NOYES, WOW – As the Wife of Winemaker (WOW), I am privileged to meet great folks, drink awesome wines, and eat wonderful food, in short, to have fun with my clever winemaker husband and our dynamic friends and family. Dave makes acclaimed wines and I, as WOW, provide humor and whimsy to keep us from taking ourselves too seriously. Over 96.5% I know about the enjoyment, making and marketing of wine I learned after meeting Dave in 1995.

I practice chiropractic in the Sonoma Valley, having graduated from Palmer College on Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa in 1978. Donna Nassar, D.C. was my name before I married Dave in 1997. Besides my WOW and DC hats, I often don other hats including; wedding minister, artist and writer.

Technical Analysis:

Vintage: 2007

Appellation: Dry Creek Valley

Blend: 100% Pinot Noir

Aging: 0% new Doreau and Mercurey French oak barrels,
the balance in ’06 barrels

Bottled: August 2008

Alcohol: 14.6%

pH: 3.66

TA: 0.58 g/100ml

Longevity: 5-15 years

Released: Spring 2009

Production: 240 Cases

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