By Travis Brown
Each year or two, I normally arrange a wine buying trip to Napa & Sonoma Valleys to re-ignite the taste buds. With such splendid diversity of Cabernets available up and down the Silverado Trail, it can be easy to overlook the fine number of pinot noirs that tend to follow where chardonnay also excels.
One great example of good quality but well-priced pinot noir comes from a Carneros winery named Dutton-Goldfield. The Carneros region is to the South, closer to the Bay of San Francisco, where the hi-low ranges in climate are often cooled by fog. Chardonnay, bubbly, and pinot noir tend to do well in this area.
In Missouri, I have seen Dutton-Goldfield products on a few wine lists as its reputation has traversed some major fine dining chains. However, by no means is it a common occurrence or frequent flier. There are some differences in which stock hills you select, which are worth noting to personalize to your preferences from their website.
At most restaurants, you might expect to see a Dutton-Goldfield pinot noir within the mid-range of the price pack, from $55 to 90 per bottle. However, if you buy or ship direct in volume, you’re getting a fine product that any Pinot fan will drink before it ages past its prime.
One note about a California visit – their facilities were far more Spartan than the caliber of its wine. If you’re looking for a picturesque hang-out amidst a small Pinot producer with great product, drive north to Lynmar Estates. So many choices, so little time.