Blanc de Noirs, North Coast – 2005
Blanc de Noirs (white from black) is the counterpart to Blanc de Blancs (white from white). Made primarily from the red grape Pinot Noir, this is a complex, medium-bodied, brut 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 lots add richness and body. Two years of yeast contact in the bottle harmonizes all the elements together in a mature, toasty style. The youthful fruit character of the wine will caramelize 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.
- Appellation: North Coast
- County Composition: 37% Mendocino, 34% Sonoma, 28% Napa, 1% Marin
- Harvest Date(s): August 19–October 12
- Barrel Fermentation: 23%
- Varietal Composition: 90% Pinot Noir, 10% Chardonnay
- Production (in cases): 10,000 cases (12/750ml)
- Alcohol: 13.2%
- TA: 0.90g/100ml
- p H: 3.02
- RS: 1.16g/100ml
- Release Date: January 2008
The relatively cool growing season of 2005 gives us a Blanc de Noirs with alluring flavors of sweet ginger, white gooseberry, and a dollop of mandarin orange. Aromas of peach melba and toasted almond introduce subtle hints of fresh raspberry and Bing cherry. The luscious mid palate entices with bright acidity and depth followed by an elegant balanced finish.
Hugh Davies and Craig Roemer, Winemakers
Blanc de Noirs, North Coast – 2005 – Quarterly Review of Wines
“Light on its feet, with crisp strawberry and cherry fruit, with a hint of toasted almond in the finish.”
Blanc de Noirs, North Coast – 2005 – 90 points – California Grapevine
Attractive, toasty, yeasty, appley aroma; flavors of citrus and green apple with persistent bubbles and a slightly creamy mouth feel; slightly tart finish. Very highly recommended.
Blanc de Noirs, North Coast – 2005 – 90 points – Wine News
Golden ale hue; active stream of fine bubbles. Fresh nose of golden apple, peach juice and light lemon scents. Creamy entry with focused pear and lemon-lime rind nuances. Drying close with a confined creamy, lime-accented acidity.
Blanc de Noirs, North Coast – 2005 – 2 stars – San Francisco Chronicle
"In 1967, Schramsberg pioneered the first Blanc de Noirs sparkling wine in the United States...Minerally, with bright lemon, orange, green apple and herb. Ripe fruit, with a slightly creamy palate...."