Tyler, Pinot Noir, Sta Rita Hills
This wine is a fantastic introduction to modern Californian Pinot Noir. The grapes come from the highly rated, cold climate Sta Rita Hills region which gives superb freshness and lifted aromatics. On the nose the wine is both spicy and floral, showing lovely black cherry fruit, a natural florality with dried herbs and bright red fruits. On the palate, the wine is restrained (not super ripe) and well-structured with notes of tart cherries, raspberries, undertones of warm spices and dried violets with lingering hints of salinity around the finish.
Ideal with red meats, grilled chicken, duck, or veal.
A son of Santa Barbara, Justin Tyler Willett began Tyler in 2005 at the age of 24 with a few barrels tucked away in the corner of the Sta. Rita Hills cellar he was working in at the time. It was there, as the assistant winemaker, he honed his approach to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. More recently, Justin and his wife Amanda purchased the site that would become Tylerís new Estate Vineyard. They planted 28 acres to Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Syrah along with an extensive remodel of the existing ranch house. Here, in a wine growing region defined by its transverse ranges and valleys, where hills glitter with marine sediment and harbour the ocean's winds, Justin makes wines of clarity and poise. His wines lead with structure and persistence; they evoke confidence, focus and vibrancy. With a firm belief that winemaking starts in the vineyard and the sincere desire to have minimal impact on the environment, grapes are farmed organically, handpicked at night, and sorted by hand at the winery. In the cellar, all lots are fermented using native yeast in large oak vats, and once dry the wines are put down to barrel for their elevage. The use of new oak varies by vineyard, vine age, and vintage and is used in a way that only complements, never overshadowing the wine.