An Evening of Pinot Noir – A Pinot-Palooza

The funny thing about packing and moving is that you actually have to unpack on the other end. But, unlike unpacking from a vacation when all your fun is over and all you have left is piles of laundry, unpacking from a move is all about new beginnings.

Progress is being made. Boxes have been unpacked and furniture has been arranged.

Blah, blah, blah…

All of this moving stuff is getting boring.

You know what’s not boring?


Mo Wine Please

Last night I was out with some dear friends. We met at their condo for appetizers then walked over to a little Italian restaurant in their neighborhood.

The evening started with a bit of excitement as we tried to herd their grumpy cat back into the bedroom from which he had been accidentally released.  To say this fella is anti-social would be putting it mildly. We’ve owned cats who did not like strangers but none of our cats were quite as fierce in letting their displeasure be known.  Let’s just say that the yowl emitted when he was finally wrangled could be heard for blocks and rattled everyone’s nerves.

Time to open some wine!

We started the evening with the 2012 Block Nine Caiden’s Vineyards Pinot Noir.

2012 Block Nine Pinot Noir

Block Nine is a California winery that makes only Pinot Noir.  As more and more Americans develop a taste for Pinot Noir, many of the “big guys” in California have jumped into the game. The folks at Block Nine felt that there was a shortage of selections in the small production/reasonable price niche and that’s where they found their success.

At a mere $12 per bottle, the 2012 Block Nine Caiden’s Vineyards Pinot Noir is rated by Robert Parker as the #1 Value Pinot Noir from California.

The tasting notes from the producers describe this wine this way:

The 2012 Block Nine Pinot is beautifully long and rich in ripe cherry and berry flavors. The aromas exhibit generous bright fruit with a mix of strawberry, violets, plum, tea, and a hint of clove. Flavorful and silky in the mouth with good body, this wine is seductive showing wild cherries and a hint of sandalwood to complete its complex finish. The 2012 growing season was generous is length and consistent temperatures. Flavors were strong at harvest and we think 2012 will prove to be a terrific vintage.

By the way, our friends described this as their “House Red Wine”. They discovered this gem by asking for recommendations from the staff at their favorite wine store (in this case Binny’s Beverage Depot).

And the perfect house wine it is. Being a Pinot Noir it appeals to a wide range of wine drinkers, it is readily available and the price point is hard to beat.  Oh, and it’s delicious!

The evening turned out to be a Pinot-palooza.

At dinner we enjoyed a bottle of the 2011 Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir (retail price $45).

2011 Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

The 2011 growing season in Sonoma was a tough one. Too much rain and cool summer temperatures made for smaller crop yield and a great challenge for the winemakers.

The 2011 Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir, rated 91 points by Wine Advocate, rose to the occasion. I found the flavors to be more on the savory side with berries and gentle spice. There certainly was a cherry presence but it was more subtle in this wine compared to the Block Nine wine.

Here is how the winemaker at Flowers describes the wine:

Deep ruby red color. Aromas of wild berries, savory dried herbs, and subtle earthiness lift elegantly from the glass.  On the palate, flavors of Bing cherry, rhubarb, and pomegranate are framed by fine-grained tannins, earthy minerality and bright acidity.

This wine has an enduring fresh finish.

Another lovely evening of great wine with great friends.

{Now I’m supposed to disclose that this is not a sponsored post, just my friends’ wine and my opinions.}

In other Lux wine news, the wine cellar should be completed this week.  Here is a sneak-peek at how it looks.

Wine cellar

How was your weekend? Any new wine finds that I should know about?

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  1. Hooray for starting to get settled and taking time out for dinner and good wine!
    It looks like the wine cellar is coming along nicely – I can’t wait to see the completed project!
    Kim recently posted…Racing – Then and NowMy Profile

  2. Wow! Now that’s what I call a wine cellar. Can’t wait to see it when it’s finished. So funny you should write a post on Pinot Noir – my Mister has really been getting into it. I will get some for him. Thanks for the recommendation. Have a great week, Mo!
    katie clooney recently posted…Some More Potty TalkMy Profile

  3. The wine cellar looks AMAZING!! Cannot wait to see it filled up! 🙂 And unpacking from a move is just torture!-Ashley
    thedoseofreality recently posted…Would You Rather: Hear All Of Your Best Friend’s Thoughts Or Not Communicate At All?My Profile

  4. I had a glass of prosecco at dinner on Saturday – does that count? I do love your wine cellar – I would kill for a closet that size !
    Dana recently posted…Snow sucks, books don’tMy Profile

  5. That wine cellar is going to be a-maz-ing! I’m so jealous! You guys are going to enjoy that so much.
    Kristen recently posted…In defense of the ChihuahuaMy Profile

  6. What a wine cellar – looks wonderful. Can’t wait to see it finished and thanks for some new to me wine recommendations!
    Design Chic recently posted…InGoodTaste:PolhemusSaveryDaSilvaMy Profile

  7. I think good pinots are hard to find. I look forward to trying these. I especially love a Pinot in the warmer months if I want to serve a red.

  8. Wow! Your wine cellar looks awesome!! And honestly, I could use some wine right now. It is snowing again.
    Michelle recently posted…Creamy Citrus Black Bean Soup with Hood Sour Cream #Sponsored #MCMy Profile

  9. Wait a minute? I wasn’t invited?! LOL!

    Julia recently posted…Open-Faced Garlic Bread SandwichesMy Profile

  10. Ooohhhhhh this just makes me want to dash out for a bottle. Or six. I like your reference to the fact that unpacking from a move is so very different from a trip. It sure is. I’ve just never really thought about it.
    Dearly hope you were kidding when you said flooding was a possibility. That wine cellar is a treasure. I’d hate to think of it being ruined.

  11. I am crossing all my fingers and toes that we have a nice, gentle melt and all the water flows to the gutters and drains as it is supposed to. I better throw in a few prayers, too!
    Mo Lux recently posted…It’s What You Don’t Know You Should Know That Gets YouMy Profile

  12. That wine cellar looks amazing! I can’t wait to try these two new Pinots. I rarely meet one I don’t like and the weekend is calling me already…since it’s Tuesday I’m in a little trouble here 🙂
    Allie recently posted…The Rundown: Payoff WeekMy Profile

  13. that wine cellar is to-die-for! i am trying to decide what my first glass of wine will be post-baby! by the way, have you heard of kosta browne? apparently really amazing pinot noirs. takes years to get off their waitlist and to be able to order.
    Catherine Gacad recently posted…Money Monday: Flying High on Financial SecurityMy Profile

  14. That wine cellar is going to be amazing! Do you already have enough wine to fill it out do you have to stock up?
    Trish recently posted…Week in Review 2014 {#6}My Profile


  1. […] The 2011 Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($45 per bottle) would be a very good choice. You might remember that I told you about this wine as part of my Pinot-Palooza post. […]

  2. […] Pinot Noir is a great choice for a red house wine. It pairs really well with most foods from meat to fish. There are lots of Pinot Noirs out there at virtually every price point. […]

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