2009 Blanc de Noirs, North Coast
“Blanc de Noir,” meaning “white from black,” gets its name from the Pinot Noir grapes used to make this complex, medium-body sparkling wine. Schramsberg pioneered the Blanc de Noirs style in the United States, releasing the first such American sparkler in 1967. The key to producing this complex Blanc de Noirs is Schramsberg’s vast and varied focus on diverse cool-climate vineyards. Pinot Noir from Carneros and Anderson Valley combine with fruit from low-yielding Sonoma and Marin coastal vineyards to develop a sparkling wine with a breadth of fruitful aroma and flavor. Select Chardonnay lots give zest and backbone to the blend.
Making a white wine from a red grape requires great care: hand-picked fruit, early morning harvest, optimal fruit maturity and delicate pressing. A balance of bright flavors, crisp acidity and minimal tannins is achieved. Barrel and malolactic fermentation of particular wine lots add richness and body. Yeast contact in the bottle harmonizes all the elements together in a mature, toasty style. The youthful fruit character of the wine will develop and soften with additional age in the bottle. With proper storage, this sparkling wine will be delicious for many years, even a couple of decades to come.
Schramsberg Blanc de Noirs is particularly well-suited to serve with a variety of foods, including soft and nutty cheeses, macadamia nut-crusted halibut, and pork tenderloin with fresh rosemary and lemon thyme.
The 2009 Blanc de Noirs has concentrated aromas of red apple, apricot and orange marmalade, which are complemented with tropical notes of guava, mango and passion fruit. The fruitful nose is completed with essences of candied ginger and Meyer lemon tart. Flavors of orange, cherry and raspberry are present, followed by nuances of peach-berry cobbler. The wine enters crisp and lingers on the palate, finishing with a balanced and mouthwatering acidity. Winemakers Hugh Davies and Keith Hock