Friday, February 18, 2011

Thomas Henry Pinot Noir (2009)

Followers of this blog know that I love Pinot Noirs, especially wines from Oregon's Willamette Valley.  However, Oregon is only the second largest Pinot Noir producing state.  The largest is California, which has many Pinot Noir regions, such as Sonoma Coast, Russian River Valley, Central Coast, Santa Rita, Santa Clara and parts of Napa Valley.

It is in Napa Valley where Thomas Henry Wines produces its Pinot Noir.  Thomas Henry is a vineyard named after winemaker Tom Meadowcroft's father.  Meadowcroft first started to learn his wine-making skills first in Bordeaux, and later in Washington and California.  He has said that he produces his wines in the European style of winemaking, something said by a lot of new world winemakers (i.e., winemakers in the Western Hemisphere).

The Thomas Henry Pinot Noir is a fairly earthy wine.  Its aromatic elements and nose reveal some complexities that are similar to Oregon Pinot Noirs.  On the label, Meadowcroft describes the nose as having "dark cherry and wild strawberry aromas, with a touch of the heathlands."  I usually pick up dark cherries and I did with this wine.  I could also see the wild strawberry in the nose.    As for the taste, the winemaker says the cherries and strawberries are also present in the wine itself.

The winemaker suggests that this wine can be paired with pastas and tapas.  In a past blog post, I paired this wine with Mushroom Gratinate, tying the earthy notes of the wine (the dark cherries and the "touch of the heathlands" with a quintessential earthy ingredient (mushrooms).  I also think this wine would go well with pasta dishes with red sauces and even lamb.

This wine is available at restaurants, like Rags Bar and Grill in Birmingham, Alabama, where Clare's father, Frank Savage, and I will be hosting a Guest Chef Night on Monday, February 21, 2011.  This wine is also available at wine stores, such as Olney Wine and Beer in Olney, Maryland.  It sells for about $18.99 a bottle.



Magito said...

Hi keith;
Glad you are enjoying this wine I make. I also enjoy this with Mushrooms. We get some wonderful Chantrelles and the two together are wonmderful.
Tom Meadowcroft

Keith Bolek said...

Thank you for reading my blog. Your Pinot Noir is excellent and I had some more at a local restaurant last night. Keep up the great work.


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