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Since 1979, La Crema has pioneered the cultivation of Burgundian varietals on the Sonoma coast. This cool coastal region’s boundary begins with a narrow strip at the Mendocino County border, continuing along the western coastal edge of Sonoma County through the mouth of the Russian River Valley , and extending to the Sonoma-Carneros border of Napa.

Californian wines in the UK fall into two broad categories – cheap and nasty or vastly over-priced and verging on the rather good. As a vast majority of the states production never reaches these shores we are generally left with the mass-market brands or the niche, boutique producers trying to make a name. The latter come with vastly inflated price tags.

But there are a few wines that slip between the two extremes. Take this Pinot Noir as an example; still a little expensive but certainly enjoyable.

La Crema Pinot Noir, 2005, Sonoma Coast, California

Red WineWine Tasting Note: La Crema Pinot Noir, 2005, Sonoma Coast, California.
Available from Waitrose for £14.25.
A big hearted wine – sweet, generous fruit – rich, sultry black berry all edged with a savoury complexity. Flavours of deep blackberries, pepper and a little spice playing at the back. A good long, mellow finish. Just when you think the wine is going to get all flabby and unstructured in kick the tannins to bring all back into focus. It all finishes with a food-friendly splat of acidity.
Scribblings Rating – 86/100 [3.25 out of 5]

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