Last year I was sent a present from a friend in New Jersey who I’ve done tasting for in the past, unfortunately I don’t get to go over there every time, I have do them over Skype, which is always fun, anyway I digress. The bottle they sent me was a 2006 Deer Camp Carneros Pinot Noir, from the Etude winery in Napa valley.
Founded 25 years ago by Tony Soter, as what he describes as a philosophical state of mind, which is now a state of the art wine making facility. Now in the hands of current winemaker Jon Priest and viticulturist Franci Ashton in their pursuit of oenological perfection.
The Deer Camp Pinot Noir was their first single vineyard designated Pinot Noir, from vineyards situated in the northwest corner of the Carneros appellation, western facing and feature well drained, rocky, Kidd Stony Loam soils. The Deer Camp name comes from an old deer camp structure that stands at the base of the vineyard.
In the glass this wine had a deep, dark cherry colour, with wonderful intense aromas of dark fruit, Cherries and Blueberries, while on the palate you get all the fruit and a touch of savoury herbs, Bay leaves. To go with this you get very fine, elegant tannins which add a silky texture to the wine, a great acidity to balance all this and the length of flavour that keeps going on and on, making an incredibly well-crafted wine.
For me this was an amazing wine, which I can’t recommend highly enough, and I have to say for me rivals anything that is produced in Burgundy, Pinot Noir’s homeland.