I treasure each vintage of Olivet Lane. At 40 years of age, it marches in step with my winemaking career of four amazing decades. Since I first made wine from this vineyard in 1986, its owner, Bob Pellegrini, and I have developed an enduring friendship. Bob recently assigned me the role of vineyard consultant, which I have happily accepted. We work together to support these mature vines with the extra care they deserve. Reducing the fruit load and applying generous amounts of mushroom- based compost are among the methods we use.
The reward is yet another classic vintage of Olivet Lane Pinot. The aroma is packed with mouthwatering Queen Anne and Bing cherry, deep red raspberry and cassis. Luscious accents of rose petals, anise, pepperwood and sweet ground cinnamon deepen its complexity. The scant fruit harvest is reflected in the palate’s full, smooth tannins, which in turn create a superbly ageable finish.
My sister Marcia walks and monitors this vineyard near her home nearly every morning with her troop of Norwich terriers. It’s appropriate that she created a sumptuous dish she has aptly named Red & White Lasagna for Lovers of Pinot Noir. The simplicity and richness of this dish accentuate the intricacy of this Olivet Lane in a most delicious way. Serve with a tossed green salad and crusty fresh-baked bread. Find it on our website recipe page under Family Recipes.
"Historically, the Olivet Lane Vineyard pinot has been Merry's signature achievement in the world of fine wine, a triumph in virtually every vintage. It remains so even in the challenging year of 2011, when foul weather was the main story line. This vintage of Olivet Lane is sensational, showing an earthy character on the nose that the French like to call "garrigue." This wine is all about dark fruits and spice, with a hint of anise and tremendous depth without losing its elegant persona. One of the finest California pinots I've tasted this year."
Robert Whitley, Wine Talk, “Thoughts for the Year,” December 2013
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