Birichino 2022 "Saint Georges" Pinot Noir
The guys at Birichino are one of the few California producers that actually pull off the elegance, complexity and ethereal seductiveness of Burgundy that has made French Pinot Noir so famous and sought after around the world. It shouldn't come as too big of a surprise that Birichino founders and winemakers Alex Krause and John Locke are able to pull this minor miracle off each year as they mentored under Califonia's original Francophile/Rhone Ranger winemaker, Randall Graham at Bonny Doon.
Most of the tiny cluster, immaculate Saint Georges fruit comes from three blocks farmed by George Besson off the eastern flank of Santa Cruz Mountains. This small corner of the Santa Clara Valley is noted for producing red wines that can be identified by the scent of botanical extracts, mountain herbs, and cherry liqueur. As always, the St Georges Pinot is vinified under the mysterious and prismatic auspices of wild yeast with an elevage of cement tanks and quite old barriques before being bottled, unfined and unfiltered. Black cherries and rose petals start the balance of dark and rich and light and elegant that is a common theme throughout your drinking enjoyment of this wine. Your mid-palate is hit some acidity that turns that dark fruit up front to hints of strawberries and raspberries. This wine has some bramble characteristics, but the acidity really helps keep it balanced and light.