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Paradise Ridge 2006 Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley

Paradise Ridge 2006 Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley

What We Say 2006 Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley

If you are visiting us for the first time, Welcome! The Wine Spies feature one exceptional wine each day – and we only bring you wines that we ourselves seek out and love. Always, the wines listed here are superb.

Mission Codename: The Great Thanksgiving Pinot Emergency

Operative: Agent Zin

Objective: Conduct emergency Recon on Paradise Ridge winery and immediately recover their best Pinot Noir

Mission Status: Accomplished!

Current Winery: Paradise Ridge

Wine Subject: 2006 Paradise Ridge Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

Winemaker: Dan Barwick


Wine Spies Field Operatives (our customers) have been clamoring for Pinot Noir recently and have put in urgent requests for more – and in time for Thanksgiving dinner! Agent Zin, already in the field surveilling another winery, is diverted to Paradise Ridge to recover their finest Pinot Noir. Read his mission debrief following the particulars on this great wine.

Wine Spies Tasting Profile:

Look -Light ruby red color with amazing clarity and glinting highlights

Smell – Big floral notes tickling the nose – especially rose petals, with a hint of mud and wet sand (mineral component)

Feel – Thick, smooth, and velvety, this wine glides across your tongue

Taste – Delicious light cherry with an interesting hint of Indian spices tucked deep down, complimenting the wine rather then overwhelming it

Finish – Once again this wine glides across your tongue where the flavors pleasantly linger for a long time as they finally coast off gently

Conclusion – The fruit-forward aspect of this wine is in perfect balance with its unique spicy earthiness. Neither characteristic overwhelms the wine – or the drinker. There is also a wonderful smoothness to this wine that allows all the flavors and spice to “coast” across your palate. This is a refined Pinot Noir that I find fun to drink!

Mission Report:

Being a Wine Spy demands great flexibility… and the ability to turn on a dime. When a need arises or an opportunity presents itself I am ready to spring into action.

Just yesterday I got an urgent Flash message on my Wine Spies modded iPhone (we call it our SPiPhone, complete with wine-finding features that Apple never dreamed of). Wine Spies Central Command needed a Pinot Noir that we could ship to our Operatives in time for Thanksgiving, which meant that I had to find it before the sun went down.

I logged on to www.thewinespies.com/[censored], uploaded my present coordinates and entered a query that cross referenced my location against nearby Pinot Noir producers with a quality coefficient of greater than 8 (on the Wine Spies scale of 1 to 10). Instantly I was presented with the results and the winery that topped the list was Paradise Ridge. Wasting no time, I pointed my car in the direction of the winery and gunned the throttle.

Too bad I didn’t have far to go as I hardly got to get up to speed. I’d have to reserve that for my next trip to Napa!

The winery was easy enough to find, and after winding my way uphill, along their long sculpture-lined driveway, I parked in the tasting room lot and walked to the building. Once near the tasting room, I stopped on the deck and took in the expansive view of the vineyards below. At this time of day, with the sun just starting to set, the fall leaves on the vines almost glowed with a golden amber and orange.

I stood there, enraptured, until my SPiPhone chimed, reminding me that I wasn’t moving. Shaken from my reverie, I made my way to the tasting room where I declared my emergency – and was immediately tasted on today’s excellent Pinot Noir!

I return with a wine that should have a place at your Thanksgiving table. With its structure, its unique mouthfeel and its aromas and flavors, this is a Pinot that will pair with most everything on the menu.

Wine Spies Vineyard Check:

The Paradise Ridge Winery can be seen in this satellite photo

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What the Winery Says Paradise Ridge

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GOLD MEDAL – Sonoma County Harvest Fair (2007)

About This Wine:

An exceptionally cool summer gave us fruit with immense concentration and clarity. Five different clones from two vineyards give this wine amazing depth and complexity. An opulent barrel program adds a silky richness. This classic Pinot Noir exudes all the distinctive qualities and character one expects from grapes grown in the Russian River Valley.

Winemaker Notes:

“Two Vineyards” – This wine comes from a blend from two distinctly different vineyards within the bounds of the Russian River Valley.

Elizabeth & Henry’s (our neighbours) Vineyard sits on the west facing bench land, just below the winery, in the slightly warmer climes on the eastern fringes of the Russian River – planted to the seductively fruitful Pommard Clone, which brings soft red summer fruits and a delicate, almost tea like scent to this blend .

The Sapphire Hill Vineyard, on the other hand sits further west, in a cooler, lower lying site, just a short distance from the Russian River itself. It’s planted to the more spicy Dijon clones of this grape and brings some clean and perhaps more exotic tones to this wine.

The winery, at one point in time during the 2006 harvest was dominated by the aromatics of this rather unique fermentation. It really was quite amazing, there was this piercing clarity of fruit, a pureness, haunting somehow, and perhaps a sense of something that I had last had in Burgundy, some ten years earlier. There were times during that crazy harvest that I’d stop by this ‘Tank 7’ and breath in that special something and know I that this was a wine I was going to be enjoying for along time to come.

Well now. Now that I have shared this small secret, this experience with you I know that some of you will also sense this Pinot Noir’s unusual qualities, and there will be perhaps something else…….


Dan Barwick – Winemaker, Paradise Ridge Winery

About The Winery:

Situated high on a ridge overlooking the Russian River Valley in the heart of Sonoma County, Paradise Ridge Winery and the Byck Family Estate are dedicated to; Family, Art, History, Nature and hand crafting wines rich in taste and tradition.

Paradise Ridge wines are targeted to the passionate, cultured (lover of art, history, and nature) wine drinker who wants to share a personal stake in our family’s boutique wine estate, and will appreciate dedication to producing the best handcrafted ultra-premium wine.

Small lots of Sonoma County (Russian River Valley), vineyard designated, hand picked, intensely flavored, hillside grapes.Paradise Ridge Winery is dedicated to meticulously caring for and looking after hand picked fruit from dirt to glass. On-site State-of-the-art production facility with the ability to produce and warehouse up to 10,000 cases of wine.Paradise Wood Sculpture Grove is a world class contemporary sculpture garden where the native oak woodland environment provides a natural gallery for supporting the arts.Historical exhibit of Kanaye Nagasawa, “The Grape King,” who was the winemaker at the Fountain Grove Winery which produced 90% of the wine in Sonoma County at the turn of the century.

Visitors to Paradise Ridge enjoy “the most beautiful view in Sonoma County,” looking over the estate vineyards into the Russian River Valley and beyond to the coastal mountains.


The perfect combination of romance, family values, and rich European tradition inspired the dream of Paradise Ridge Winery, which graces a hillside over Santa Rosa, California. When Walter Byck married Marijke Hoenselaars in Holland forty-five years ago, little did they realize that together they would build a wine estate in the heart of America’s finest grape growing region, Sonoma County.

Walter and Marijke moved to Santa Rosa in 1965 and realized they had found a haven to raise their growing family. In 1978, after more than a year of searching for a ranch where their five children could camp, hike and fish, Walter came home one night, rain dripping from his coat and said, “Marijke, children … I have seen Paradise!” Thereafter, the 156 acres of land overlooking the Russian River Valley in Sonoma County, California became known as Paradise Ranch.

Their love of wine, combined with a growing alliance with the incredible region they now called home, encouraged Walter and Marijke to start their own vineyards. Within the first year of owning Paradise Ranch, Sauvignon Blanc had been planted. Chardonnay was planted from 1985 to 1986 making a total of seventeen acres of these Varietals. The outstanding quality of fruit that the vineyards produce inspired the Bycks to start their own winery.

After five years of careful planning, the dream of Paradise Ridge Winery became a reality. Opened in May of 1994, Paradise Ridge Winery has become a haven where locals and visitors alike come to savor the wonderful wines, bring their friends and take in the magnificent views. It’s unique California design with expansive decks and a terra cotta terrace offers breathtaking views of the vineyards, the Russian River Valley and far beyond. The beautiful and serene atmosphere is the perfect setting for businesses to hold seminars and special events and for joyful brides and grooms to exchange their wedding vows.

In 1997 five more acres were planted on the estate to Zinfandel, Syrah and Petite Sirah.

After 14 years of making wines, Paradise Ridge Winery is happy to announce that a new state-of-the-art winemaking facility is completed. Situated on the estate it is as beautiful on the outside as it is on the inside and is currently in full use for the 2003 harvest.

Guests are welcomed daily from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. for sales & tasting (Jan-Mar open Friday through Monday). April through October, on Wednesday evenings, visitors are invited to “Wines and Sunsets” where they can bring a picnic and enjoy Paradise Ridge Wines while admiring the view as the sun sets over “Paradise.”

Technical Information:

Harvest Dates: October 15th, 2006

Brix: 24 brix

Total Acidity: 5.52 grams per liter

pH: 3.67

Oak: 100% French, 50% New

Fermentation: Cool soak, Open top, Submerged cap

Production: 240 Cases

The following recipe created by Chef Michael Quigley was specially chosen to complement our 2006 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

Glazed BBQ Pork Baby Back Ribs
Makes about 3 dozen

1 cup Maple Syrup
1/2 cup Dijon Mustard
3 Tbsp Molasses
1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
6 Garlic Cloves peeled
2 Tbsp Crushed Coriander Seeds

4 lbs Pork Baby Back Ribs
Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper to taste


Mix first six ingredients very well in a large bowl or pan.

Add ribs and marinade for 3-4 hours.

Preheat oven to 375°.

Remove ribs from marinade, reserve marinade and place ribs on sheet pans with a rim. Season ribs with salt and fresh pepper. Place ribs in the oven and baste a few times during cooking. Turn ribs over after 25 minutes. Cook another 25 minutes. Total cooking time should be approximately 50 minutes. Do not baste the last 10 minutes. Cut slab between bones and serve hot with a glass of Paradise Ridge 2006 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir.

Paradise Ridge 2006 Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley 750ml Wine Bottle
Offer Expired Nov 15, 2007 at 11:59 pm
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Paradise Ridge 2006 Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley 750ml Wine Bottle
Offer Expired Nov 15, 2007 at 11:59 pm
Register to get notified when this wine is back in stock:
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