2009 Monterey Reserve Pinot Noir
California: Monterey County
Winner of a prestigious Gold Medal at the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, today’s 2009 Topel Pinot Noir Reserve Monterey is a vibrant, delicious treat that embodies the right balance of earthiness and vibrant fruit. Bright aromas jump from the glass, while on the palate the wine shows lovely complexity and elegant style.
We love Topel wines and I make it a point to personally visit with Donnis and Mark when selecting one of their wines for you. If you ever find yourself in Healdsburg, I recommend a visit to their lovely downtown salon.
Best enjoyed after a little decanting, enjoy this wine now or hold for the next few years. We enjoyed our sample bottles straight from the cellar. When the wine was still on the cooler side, the brighter fruit flavors really stood out. As the wine warmed, earthen flavors emerged, giving the wine a more complex overall feel.
Light ruby at the heart of the wine, transitioning to pale pink sapphire at the edges. After swirling the wine, skinny, widely-spaced legs move very slowly down the glass wall.
Wild spring strawberry wraps around black tea leaf, young plum, blackest cherry, black pepper and fresh forest floor.
Sweet cherry quickly gives way to racy black pepper, India black tea leaf, white pepper, dark wild mushroom, blackberry and cassis. At the very end, underripe raspberry lingers long into the finish.
Bright and lingering with earthy flavors that lead to tart young raspberry.
Pair this delightfully flexible wine with a variety of foods, including apple and cherry braised pork chops. For a vegetarian treat, enjoy with a wild mushroom risotto.
What the Winery Says
Temperamental, feisty and frisky — a teenager that’s seemingly always in rebellion. That’s Pinot Noir. Any winemaker will tell you that it’s the hardest grape to train, from bud break to bottle.
But our 2009 Pinot Noir Reserve — winner of a Gold Medal in the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition — is, hands down, the finest one we’ve made. Crafted in an elegant, rich, Burgundian style, it is reminiscent of the greatest wines from Vosne-Romanée, the French epicenter of Pinot Noir. The grapes for this beauty were grown in a meticulously farmed vineyard in northern Monterey County, near the famed Chalone vineyards. It is a blend of three clones — Pommard, 667 and 115 on 100R rootstock.
Sparkling ruby in color, it bursts forth with a bouquet laden with pomegranates, sour cherries, rose petal, orange peel and mulling spices. The flavors are rich, deep and long-lasting. Mark describes it as a “Mozart piano concerto for two pianos — delicate, soft tones moving to a dramatic crescendo.” A perfect companion for turkey or salmon, it’s wonderful to drink now but will grow more beautiful with age.
Gold Medal - San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
About the Winery
The Goal of Topel Winery is Simple…to make absolutely the best wine that can be made from these grapes in this spot at this time, and to do it honestly. We literally capture a piece of time so that when we open a bottle, no matter when, it brings back the whole year. Every vintage is like a new child.
All Topel wines are lovingly handcrafted by Mark and Donnis, who employ minimalist techniques to transform simple grapes into world-class wines that are robust, yet balanced and elegant — soulful wines that perfectly reflect the soil and climate of their origin.
At Topel Winery, the art of making wine begins within 15 minutes after the grapes are harvested, with a “field crush” right in the vineyard. The grapes are then transported immediately to the winery to begin their transformation into wine. Topel Winery uses the highest quality fruit from our estate vineyards and from selected sites that grow grapes to our stringent standards, for making our different varietals.
Winemaker Mark Topel
Mark is the hands-on owner and winemaker of Topel Mountain Estate Winery, a “second career” that, to his delight, is consuming more of his time as years pass. While Mark was a connoisseur of wine for many years and spent a significant amount of time with some of California’s most prominent winemakers and growers, who became friends, mentors and supporters. Absorbing what he could from their extensive knowledge — and by auditing winemaking classes at the University of California-Davis — Mark became highly skilled in crafting wine.
A traditionalist by nature, Mark’s love of history led him to approach grape growing and winemaking from an intellectual perspective. He and Donnis planted the vineyards using tried and true techniques established by the Romans and the French — both of whom cherish hillside fruit — and adapted many traditional methods that have produced some of the world’s greatest wines for centuries.