Gioia Wines

2009 Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir •Los Alamos and Garey Ranch Vineyard

California: Santa Barbara County: Santa Maria Valley

Offer Expired:Sep 12, 2011 at 11:59 pm
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Mission Codename: I Love My Pinot!

Operative: Agent White

Objective: Return to Gioia Wines and retrieve the latest release of their delicious Santa Barbara Pinot Noir

Mission Status: Accomplished!

Current Winery: Gioia Winery

Wine Subject: 2009 Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir

Winemaker: Teri Love


This vintage of Teri Love’s Gioia Pinot marks the third vintage we’ve featured – and we love each and every one of them. Today’s very limited production selection is produced from two Santa Maria vineyards: The Los Alamos and the Garey Ranch – both well known for growing among the finest grapes in the region.

Santa Barbara County’s Pinot Noir may have become famous by the movie Sideways, but the tradition of wine growing and winemaking dates back to the Spanish missionaries but after prohibition many of the vines disappeared. In the early 1970s vines began to reappear and in just a few years, however unlikely, the region began to develop a reputation for producing exceptional Bugundian varietals challenging Oregon and New Zealand in the production of exceptional Pinot Noir.

Wine Spies Tasting Profile:

Look – Deep and brilliant ruby red with a dark but clear core that shows ruby highlighted streaks when held to the light. Along the edges, the color pales slightly, and when swirled, tightly spaced fast and thin legs streak down the side of the glass.

Smell – Bright and fresh aromas of red fruit including red cherry, strawberry and tart raspberry blend with a subtle earthy and toasted vanilla undertones. Hints of black tea, brown and exotic spice adds to the inviting nose of this wine.

Feel – Smooth upon entry, this dry and medium-to-full-bodied wine is creamy and expansive on the palate with soft but structured tannins and vibrant acidity along with smoothly textured minerality that lingers into the finish.

Taste – Rich and ripe red cherry, fresh raspberry and strawberry-rhubarb pic flavors are expansive on the palate but don’t overpower the subtle complex flavors of exotic and hot spice, soft earthy notes, hints of cola and black tea and creamy toasted vanilla oak.

Finish – Clean long and lingering with this wines bright acidity holding onto the fruit, spice, earth and other complex flavors just long enough to invite another sip.

Conclusion – Once again, Teri Love charms us with her 2009 Gioia Winery Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir. A delicious and pure example that highlights the region’s distinct fresh and ripe red fruit with soft complexity but not at the expense of being approachable. Enjoy this wine now or for the next several years and pair with a late summer salad topped with ripe and fresh fruit or fresh and ripe cheeses.

Mission Report:


SUBJECT: Teri Love, Proprietress

WINE EDUCATION: Real-life experience – tasting wines all over the world; Apprenticing under Jim Porter of KLJ Cellars.

WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY: The fruit speaks for itself.

WINEMAKER QUOTE: “In wine there is truth”, Latin proverb



AGENT RED: Greetings, Teri. We are thrilled to be showing your 2009 Pinot Noir, today. Thanks so much for taking some time to answer questions for our Operatives today.

TERI: Happy to be back with you, again.

RED: And to you! Tell me, was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?

TERI: Wine makes the most wonderful occasion even better.

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

TERI: Jim Porter – his palate and talent are enviable.

RED: Who do you make wine for?

TERI: Myself – if I am loving the taste chances are good that others will as well

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

TERI: 777 Clone 75 % from Garey Ranch in Santa Maria Valley & 115 Clone 25% from Los Alamos Vineyard in Santa Barbara County

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

TERI: Tenderloin wrapped in bacon BBQed over red oak.

RED: In your opinion, what makes Santa Barbara region so special?

TERI: Cool growing region average temps 72 degrees daytime with nights around 55 degrees. This Pinot Noir has a smoky cherry flavor with a hint of leather. Lush textures & soft tannins make this velvety wine a silky pleasure on the palate.

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

TERI: The 2011 Pinot Noir fruit is going to start being picked in the next 2 – 5 days – so equipment is getting into place.

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

TERI: With an open mind and an empty glass

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

TERI: Enjoy and share the Gioia!

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!

What the Winery Says

About This Wine:

Aged in 50% French oak barrels. Rich garnet color, seductive flavor bursting with ripe strawberry & raspberry.

This wine is comprised of two vineyards Los Alamos Vineyard and Garey Ranch Vineyard (Santa Maria Valley). The grape clusters were gracious and produced 152 gallons of grape juice per ton, providing plenty of concentrated flavors in the finished wine. The Pinot Noir yields were 4.0 tons per acre.

We crushed and destemmed the grapes leaving 10% whole cluster. We cold soaked for 24 hours. After the must warmed to 55 degrees F, the 1 1/2 ton bins were inoculated with RC212 cultured yeast. This strain is specific for its use in Pinot Noir for expression of varietal fruit and spice. Primary fermentation lasted Nine days when we pressed the must into 500 gallon tanks. The wine settled for two days before racking into barrels. The wine was inoculated with OENOS cultures to start the secondary malolactic fermentation. The wine aged in barrels for 10 months.

About The Winery:

GIOIA Italian for JOY

The inspiration for GIOIA was born from the joy my son Tyler brings to my life.

He studied abroad for a year in Florence, Italy, cherishing every second of his time there. Making the most of learning the language, traveling extensively…getting into the spirit of Italy.

GIOIA is in honor and memory of his strength, his loyalty, how fiercely he loved life, his family, his friends, animals and his ability to embrace each day with open arms.

Ty showed me by example, to enjoy a great glass of wine while appreciating a gorgeous view in a tropical locale, snow covered mountains, pounding surf, or just chillin at home.

Every moment was an occasion to be celebrated, whether traveling, racing down a ski slope, hiking with our dogs, scoring a perfect ace in tennis, smacking a golf ball, dunking a basketball, riding his bicycle for hours, working out at the gym, dining at his favorite Italian restaurants, shopping for the coolest clothes and Italian shoes, hanging with his friends, enjoying and appreciating his girlfriend….all the while, laughing at himself, never taking life too seriously.

To say he was a joy to be around is a supreme understatement.

Tyler was taken from this world, along with one of his closest childhood friends (Keith Naylor) at the age of 22 on November 12th, 2005.

He was doing another of his favorite pastimes, driving his Ducati. Keith was on the back of the bike that night. They were going to visit friends.

A motorist pulled out from a parked position on the side of the road, in front of them, with no warning. He made an illegal U-Turn across two sets of double yellow lines on the Pacific Coast Highway in Pacific Palisades, California. This act ended the lives of these beautiful, dynamic, vital, amazing young men.

My reason for sharing this tragedy, is to reach out to others. I implore everyone to welcome joy into your lives. Take nothing for granted.

Please honor and appreciate all of your relationships. Open your hearts and arms to all of your loved ones. Enjoy what life has to offer.

Share the GIOIA

LUMU (Tyler’s signature sign off) “Love U Miss U”

Tyler’s Mama – Teri Love


Jim Porter is a masterful wine maker from Santa Maria, California. He began making wine at a very young age just because he loved it. Jim put everything he had into use – kitchen utensils, strainers & trashcans while he was concocting his potions in his barn.

Spurred by his successes in home wine competitions and all of his family and friends enjoying his wine so much – Jim’s dreams of becoming a wine maker were taking shape.

During his college years at California State At Fresno, he majored in Crop Science. His connections with various vineyards made through his agricultural irrigation business and everything he learned at Cal. State – Jim entered the commercial wine making scene in Santa Barbara County in 2003 and immediately began producing award-winning wines.

Jim knew where to go in his search along California’s Central Coast – all the way from Monterey to Santa Barbara, learning the unique characteristics of soil and microclimate at each of the region’s numerous vineyards, determining where to find grapes of the highest quality.

Jim believed that starting with the best from the soil up – he could utilize what he required to create delicious and unique wines.

Jim’s vision is to make wines that sit comfortably somewhere between being fruit forward – stand alone wines, as well as food friendly wines for the ultimate pairing of taste and flavor for a delectable dining experience.

I met Jim in 2007 after moving to the Santa Ynez Valley. To say I went to a lot of wineries and tasted tons of wines is an understatement. Once I was introduced to Jim at a dinner at my own home, and tasted his wines – I knew I had found the wine maker to make my own dreams come true.

We have very similar palates and have the same passion in making the most deliciously satisfying wines possible.

The first 2 wines we “made” together were the 2007 SBC Chardonnay and the 2007 SBC Pinot Noir.

Jim – being a very patient and understanding man – allowed me to blend the barrels together for our 2007 Pinot Noir….it felt like a party with a purpose – so much fun!

Bottling day was an exciting and nerve-racking experience for me – I was smiling like a crazy person all over the place!

That feeling has stayed with me for each and every bottling we do.

Gioia would not be Gioia without Jim Porter.

Technical Analysis:

Varietals: 100% Pinot Noir-
Los Alamos Vineyard, 12-1/2% Clone 115 and 12-1/2% Pomard Garey Ranch Vineyard (Santa Maria Valley) 75% Clone 777

Harvest Date: September 12, 2009 Los Alamos Vineyard, September 15, 2009 Garey Ranch Vineyard

Brix: 25.2

Fermentation: Nine days, RC212

Aging: The wine aged in barrels for 10 months

pH: 3.48

TA: .662 g/100ml

Alcohol: 14.3%

Production: 150 Cases

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