What Makes California Pinot Noir Unique?

At Ram’s Gate Winery, we believe all the things that make a great Pinot Noir are also what make a California Pinot Noir unique and wholly loved by red wine enthusiasts everywhere. 

So, where do we start?

Is it the grape, and how notoriously difficult it is to grow? Is it the fruit’s fickle nature that can easily be manipulated by both the elements and its tightly clustered pattern?

Or is it the complexity of this undeniable and iconic wine journey?

At the risk of sounding dramatic, the California Pinot Noir is like an obscure love interest that guides winemakers through highs and lows, with highs that make your heart sing, and lows that leave you wondering what you could have done differently. 

Like most things, it is a balance that makes life, love, and Pinot Noir beautiful. 

The Land. The Sea. The Air. The Process. The People.

Pinot Noir is a distinctive red wine that commands attention. Not just from those who enjoy it, but those who nurture the grapes, then the harvesters, winemakers, and completely through the bottling process. 

Showcasing bright red fruit, earth, and spice, with an incredibly balanced structure, Sonoma County is known for producing some of the most elegant Pinot Noir in California. 

The difference, and the unique qualities of each Pinot Noir, are defined by the American Viticultural Areas, or AVAs, the grapes hail from. 

Pinot Noir and the Russian River Valley AVA

The Russian River Valley AVA is exactly as it sounds. 

A Sonoma County forested vineyard area distinguished by the Russian River that winds through the region. 

Coastal influences like thick fog and cool climates combine to reveal a Pinot Noir that has a natural radiance of expressive red fruit and integrated tannins that are brighter than the Pinot Noir that hails from the warmer northern region, which is darker and spicier. 

Our 2018 Pinot Noir, Bush Crispo Vineyard begins in its journey in the Russian River Valley, produced from two different parcels planted in 1998 and 2008, marking 10- and 20-year-old vines collectively for this 2018 vintage.

This unique Pinot Noir has made its way around the critics’ corner, and faired very well on the wine scale, including the following point awards:

  • 95 PTS - Jeb Dunnuck
  • 94 PTS - Wine Enthusiast
  • 93 PTS - James Suckling

Ram’s Gate Wine is a culmination of sustainable practices and thoughtful processes that place our environment first, which helps cultivate unique Pinot Noir grapes from different appellations that provide the variety wine enthusiasts crave. That includes our 2018 Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast too, which is uniquely defined by red currants, kirsch, blood orange, hibiscus, and an incredibly rich texture.

Get to Know Pinot Noir and Choose Your Unique Style In-Person or At Home

Ram’s Gate Wine has something for everyone, including unique styles of Pinot Noir that allow our guests to taste the difference between the appellations where the finicky grapes are grown during an in-person wine tasting experience, or by order online for delivery or curbside pickup today.