This is the inaugural vintage of Pinot Noir for ShunYi Cellars. Like the Chardonnay, it is from grapes grown in the McIntyre Vineyard, located in what many regard as the “sweet spot” in the middle of the Santa Lucia Highlands. The Highlands is remarkable for the consistency of soil throughout the region, deep loam derived partly from decomposed granite. The soil is well-drained, but it is quite deep, and the vines can be quite deep-rooted. Even though the area receives very little rainfall, many vineyards are farmed with little or no irrigation.
The winemaking at ShunYi emphasizes flavor over-extract and strives for purity of aroma and flavor. Little new oak was used during aging, and the winemaking is as natural as is practical, with no added yeast, bacteria, or adjuncts. Just grapes and a little elbow grease. 60 cases made. SOLD OUT
2019 was a long cool growing season in the Santa Lucia Highlands. Pinot Noir from there can be showy, bordering on overripe, but the 2019 ShunYi is restrained. It is medium-bodied with a pretty bright red color, aromas of strawberry and sandalwood, and a hint of candied cherries, wonderfully pure Pinot Noir flavors. On the palate, it is beautifully balanced, almost seamless, with a good backbone of acidity, and moderate tannins. Like the finest Pinot Noirs, it improves with air. Decant it an hour before serving and it will really sing.