The Sonoma Trail™ Sonoma County Pinot Noir 2006

I laughed a bit as I poured this wine into the glass: I’d just opened two bottles of Ridge petite sirah and, well, this wine is pretty much at the exact opposite end of the color spectrum of red wines. If the Ridge was coagulating bull’s blood, then this is more like an overbrewed cup of Red Zinger. No, scratch that, it looks like agua de jamaica – a Mexican drink made from hibiscus flowers. This would be the perfect thing to serve to secretly alcoholic Mormons in a Salt Lake City Mexican restaurant, but I digress. I laughed again as I smelled the wine: whoa, this actually smells like Pinot! Score! Most of the time, your ten bucks gets you a grim joke of a clunky red wine as you remind yourself that yeah, this is probably the hardest grape to grow. There’s a lot of rich, fresh red cherries complemented by a very faint hint of clove and spice. It may not be the most complex thing in the world, but at least it smells recognizably like Pinot and has a cheerful, friendly fruitiness about it.In the mouth, it’s ever so slightly thin (which, oddly enough, makes it even more convincing). It’s got a kind of Red Vines-iness to it, but it’s by no means truly sweet, and it ends on a pleasant enough down note, with decent acidity and a finish that does persist for a bit.As my partner just said: hey, this shit ain’t bad. What more could you want for ten bucks?The Sonoma Trailâ„¢ [but really fresh&easy]

Price: US $9.95
Closure: Diam
Date tasted: December 2007

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