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2008 Schug Carneros Pinot Noir

2008 Schug Carneros Pinot Noir

Gold Medals
- Orange County Fair
- S.F. Int'l Wine Competition
- Tasters Guild Competition
- Best in Glass Wine Challenge
- National Orange Show-Pacific Rim

As we develop deeper relationships with high quality producers on California who are turning out great wines at great prices, certain wineries jump out as consistently delivering incredible value across a range of wines.  One of these is certainly Schug Estate, where Walter Schug and Michael Cox continue to turn out stellar wines across a range of prices.  We have offered multiple vintages of their reserve wines, which are deep, complex wines (at a correspondingly higher price).  Today instead we are offering Schug's Carneros Pinot Noir, which is sourced from chardonnay blocks on their own estate, as well of from nearby quality growers like the Sangiacomo and Iund.  The result is a wonderfully vibrant, and layered Pinot Noir priced for everyday drinking.  A perfect wine to buy a case of and enjoy over the coming holidays!

The 2008 vintage was a little unusual in California, in that it began with two rather hard frosts in the spring, which reduced the crop substantially.  The advantage of this reduction in crop is that the fruit that remains tends to be more concentrated and flavorful.  The summer was fairly average, but heat spikes in the fall caused problems for producers that were looking for extra hang-time.  However, for wineries like Schug, this was no problem as they tend to pick earlier anyway, preferring an elegant, refined style.

The 2008 Schug Carneros Pinot Noir is a wonderfully alluring pale garnet color.  The nose shows classic Pinot aromas of black cherry, cranberry and briar, along with surprising notes of kirsch and vanilla.  The palate shows more red fruit, joined by an underlying earthy character distinct to Carneros.  The wine finishes clean in texture, but with intriguingly rustic flavors of graphite and damp earth.  A beautifully balanced wine that is showing no signs of premature aging at 5 years, this will pair wonderfully with a wide range of foods, and should keep in the cellar for several years to come.

VINEYARDS: 30% Iund; 27% Sangiacomo; 16% Ricci; 8% Schug Estate; 6% Vineburg; 6% Cornerstones; 4% Brown; 3% Parmalee-Hill
HARVEST DATES: September 1st through September 29th, 2008
SUGAR AT HARVEST: 24.4 degrees Brix, average
FERMENTATION: 6 to 8 days in stainless steel punch-down and rotary fermenters, with cap immersion 3 times daily AGING / COOPERAGE: 2 months in 800 gallon oak casks (during malo-lactic fermentation) 9 months in 60 gallon French oak, medium toast barrels (30% new)
ALCOHOL: 14.0% by volume
ACIDITY: TA = 0.59g/100ml; pH = 3.56
PRODUCTION: 7,808 cases (12 x 750ml); 1,186 cases (12 x 375ml); 40 cases (6 x 1.5-Liter); 32 x 3-Liter bottles; 6 x 5-Liter bottles
RELEASE DATE: April 1st, 2010

2008 Spring Mountain Sauvignon Blanc
It’s a little hard to believe with all the rain we’ve been having in Northern California, but summer is just around the corner, and it’s definitely time to start thinking about white wines for the warmer weather.  There is no shortage of light, refreshing, high acid white wines out there to choose from when you are just looking for a warm-weather quaffer, but when you want something with a little more depth and complexity, things get a bit more challenging.  Especially if you are not a fan of Chardonnay, or just need a change of pace, it can be challenging to find a dry white with a little more depth.  Luckily, we were able to secure an allocation of the 2008 Spring Mountain Estate Sauvignon Blanc, which beautifully expresses a Bordeaux-style white wine, with the attending richness and complexity, and also delivers plenty of fresh California fruit.

The 2008 Spring Mountain Estate Sauvignon Blanc is medium straw in color, with classic Sauvignon Blanc aromas of lime, apple, and fresh cut grass.  The lively, spicy palate shows lemon peel, green apple, key lime, and even a hint of cucumber.  Fermented in neutral French oak, and with 13% Semillon in the final blend, this wine has plenty of body and structure, yet bracing acidity keeps it light and refreshing.  With all of the spicy, herbal elements in this wine it’s a natural match for salad, where the acidity cuts through the olive oil beautifully.  Try it with fennel for an intriguing match, or pair with simply prepared fish with fresh herbs.  This versatile wine is one you will want to be drinking all summer, and with WineHeist pricing, you can!

About The Winery...

Founded in 1980, Schug Carneros Estate Winery is the showcase and life-long dream of one of California's most celebrated winemakers. Walter Schug's reputation blossomed during his tenure as Founding Winemaker for Joseph Phelps Vineyards in the 1970s, where he made California’s first proprietary Bordeaux-Style blend (Insignia) and legendary vineyard designated Cabernets (Backus and Eisele Vineyards).

Drawing on his long experience in the production of fine wines in both Europe and California, Walter set up his own winery with his wife Gertrud in the cool, marine climate of the Carneros Appellation. Here he could focus on the Pinot Noir and Chardonnay varietals that had always been close to his heart.

Learn more at

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