One of the things I love about wine is the vast diversity of flavors, aromas, and textures inside each bottle. Did you know there are over 10,000 different grape varieties in the world - each with their unique profiles, countries of origin, and temperamental tendencies to be understood in the vineyard? And if we take a single grape variety, like Pinot Noir, and we look at how it changes all over the world, we see how each grape can adapt to suit the unique climate and geology of a region like the cool Alsatian mountains of France or the warm Russian River Valley of California. In each setting, it can be balanced and beautiful but pour two regions next to each other, and you might be hard pressed to believe you have the same grape in your glass. And to show you just what I mean, here we have a delicious representation of coastal Pinot Noir from Santa Barbara. Fresh as the ocean spray on the surf, ripe like the sun warming your face through the cool coastal breeze, and light in texture like the sandy soils of dunes that predate us all.
Inspired and influenced by the sea in every way, this wine feels fresh and alive. Its texture is surprisingly both crunchy and juicy, with fresh savory, saline, and spicy tones that show this is no one-note wonder, but rather, a lighter style red with incredible depth. Planted on sandy soils near the coastline by two winemaking surf buddies, this wine is bright and fun, but made in the most dedicated way. It takes more discipline than you can imagine to produce a beautifully balanced wine with minimal interventions (meaning no tricks or chemicals in the winery), but Mikey and Michael of Scar of the Sea have certainly done it here. And can you believe, this is only their entry-level Pinot Noir?
One of the simplest and most delicious ways to pair this wine is with locally made Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam brie and a fresh baguette. If you’re looking for something a bit more substantial, then I would suggest seeing how it sings with a little spice, like a curry or tacos.. Spicy foods tend to bring forward the fruit and body in a wine, making it feel more complex, more luscious, and arguably, even more satisfying while maintaining its overall balance. A bigger, bolder style of wine can get a bit out of whack with too much heat on your plate, but this style is just perfect for your upcoming Cinco de Mayo party.