BYOB - Tasting Pinot Noir from Around the World

  • August 6, 2014 · 7:30 PM
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Did you ever wanted to taste, talk and learn about Pinot Noir, selected from its best growing regions around the world ? Our next event is going to do just that, and importantly we will get to carry our own choice of wine bottle. Sounds interesting ? Okay, Please read, on how its going to work.

We have selected a restaurant that allows BYOB (Bring your own bottle) for a corkage fee of $15 per bottle. We will divide the group into two teams, Each member of "Team A" brings a bottle of wine costing around $20 and members of "Team B" pay $20 for corkage and the remaining amount to buy Dessert as an appreciation award to 2 members of "Team A" who bring the best wine. 

We have listed 5 regions around the world, where Pinot Noir is grown and the first 5 members who select an unique region (not selected by another member) when they RSVP  will be part of Team A.


Please comment on the region of your choice from the ones listed, when you RSVP, so others know which regions have already been selected.

Responses are on a first-come bases and we would certainly appreciate your role of picking a good Pinot Noir from the region of your choice from those listed below. Besides your efforts will be duly rewarded with a free desert if you happen to bring a wine that is nominated our winner for the evening.


Pinot Noir is an incredibly temperamental grape that requires of the winemaker both sensitivity and audacity in equal measure. Today Pinot Noir is grown all over the world. In France, its ideal home is Burgundy. It's also grown in other European countries, most notably Germany, Switzerland and Northern Italy.

By the 19th century Pinot Noir found its way to America, Chile, Australia, and New Zealand, but in many of these places Pinot's finicky nature and low rigor was at odds with the priorities of the winemakers at the time. Eventually each grew into itself and established unique expressions of the enigmatic variety.

We have select the following 5 regions,

Burgundy

Burgundy is sometimes called the holy grail of holy grails, home to best Pinot Noir in the world.

Climate: Continental. Warm summers (though not hot, per se) and cold (but not too cold) winters.

California

In the 1940s, most of the Pinot Noir in California was planted in the Napa Valley. Today, Pinot's main stomping grounds are in Sonoma County, Mendocino County, and Santa Barbara.


Climate: Marine along the coasts and more continental inland from the sea.

Oregon

Outside of Burgundy, there are a number of standout vineyards which produce high-quality Pinot Noir, of which the Willamette Valley Vineyard in Oregon is one of them. The Willamette Valley of Oregon is at the same latitude as the Burgundy region of France, and has a similar climate in which the finicky Pinot Noir grapes thrive.

Climate: Significantly cooler than most Pinot sites in California with cool and wet winters and dry, warm summers.

New Zealand

Pinot is primarily grown in the south island, in Nelson, Canterbury, Marlborough, Martinborough, and Otago. Vineyard practices in New Zealand are notoriously conscientious and the majority of the country's wine producers farm organically.

Climate: Maritime with a moderating effect that provides cooler summers and milder winters. The nights are cool.

Chile

 

Chile is the youngest of these five Pinot producing areas. Today, the largest plantings of Pinot Noir are concentrated in three specific areas, each with the requisite cool climate that Pinot craves. The coastal valleys of Casablanca and San Antonio to the south are bordered by the ocean and thus benefit from morning fog and cool breezes courtesy of the Humboldt Current.


The third region, Bío Bío, lies at a latitude of 37º south, making it a cooler climate by nature of latitudinal locale. The days are warm and nights are cool, providing for a long growing season. However, rainfall and winds can pose a significant challenge here, making it a region that requires a bit more courage than the others.


Climate: Ranging from maritime with a moderating effect that provides cooler summers and milder winters to something akin to a European continental climate.

Please ONLY RSVP, if you are 100% committed to attending as late cancellations or a no show will make it very difficult for the success of this event and importantly, it will take a spot from someone else who is more committed to attending.

We will taste each wine and at the end of the evening, pick the best wine, but importantly have this wonderful opportunity to try Pinot Noir from around the world and learn the characteristics of the climate and soil of each region in the making of the Pinot.

To make the tasting unbiased, Please bring your bottle wrapped in a brown bag, so the label is hidden. 

Our venue for the event will be Le Grenier, a Family run French restaurant with vintage attic décor and cozy atmosphere on the vibrant H corridor. The nearest metro is Union Station (Red)

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  • mary c.

    Thanks for the Pinot wine comments! Last night's Meet up was one of the BEST I attended in 7 years. Thanks for the excellent planning, Rodolpho

    2 · August 7

  • Rodolfo

    Contd - Here are some interesting notes about the Pinot Noirs we tasted last night. Jean Michel et Laurent Pillot 2012 Bourgogne - Brothers Jean-Michel and Laurent are 5th generation winemakers. They are so rigorous at harvest time that some pickers refuse to work for them! Lincourt Lindsay's, Sta. Rita Hills California - Sta. Rita Hills region of Santa Barbara County was largely unknown when the winery was founded in 1996, but today it is one of the most coveted, cool-climate AVAs in all of California.

    Framingham, Marlborough New Zealand -
    Riesling vines at this winery are amongst the oldest in Marlborough, planted in 1981. Originally from Gateshead in the north of England, winemaker Dr Andrew Hedley was drawn to Framingham in 2001 by his love of Riesling.

    August 7

  • Rodolfo

    Here are some interesting notes about the Pinot Noirs we tasted last night. Horseshoes and Handgrenades, Willamette valley Oregon - Andre Hueston Mack, the owner and winemaker was a former sommelier for Thomas Keller's world-renowned restaurants, French Laundry and Per Se. Prior to his pursuit for his passion for wine, André Hueston Mack had a desk job in investment banking at Citicorp Investment Services. Veranda Pinot Noir 2012 Bio Bio Valley - Bio Bio Valley with its location close to the Pacific Ocean, has similar characteristics as California’s Sonoma coast. The winemaker at Veranda is French-Canadian Pascal Marchand assumed world wide recognition for the wines he crafted at Clos des Epeneux in Pommard, and later at Domaine de la Vougeraie.

    August 7

  • Donna R.

    Thanks again to Rodolfo for a wonderful idea and format for tasting Pinot Noir and for organizing. And thanks to those who brought the good wines for us to enjoy. See you all again soon I hope.

    1 · August 7

  • Carolyn

    A fun way to taste wines from around the world!

    1 · August 7

  • Rodolfo

    The winners for tonight's Pinot Noir contest are
    1) Lincourt Lindsay's, Sta. Rita Hills California
    2) Framingham, Marlborough New Zealand
    3) Horseshoes and Handgrenades, Willamette valley Oregon

    1 · August 6

    • Rodolfo

      It was a close contest and every wine was good and reflective of its region. Thanks to Donna for getting a Pinot from Argentina to share with those that arrived early for the event.

      August 7

    • Emily M.

      Thanks for the wonderful event, Rodolfo and co.! The other two wines were: Veranda Pinot Noir 2012 Bio Bio Valley, Chile and Jean Michel et Laurent Pillot 2012 Bourgogne

      1 · August 7

  • Rodolfo

    Thanks everyone for the fun and educational event on Pinot Noir, which was possible due to everyone playing their part and managing their RSVP's.

    August 6

  • Alicia C.

    Such a fun night! Thanks Rodolfo for organizing and running the show. Hope to see everyone again soon! Cheers! :)

    2 · August 6

  • Carr

    We are upstairs

    August 6

  • Carr

    Would still love to attend if a spot opens up.

    August 4

  • Rodolfo

    This is current list of members, who are Team A, those that have been tasked to getting wine from one of the above selected regions. The others will be Team B. Alicia - California
    Emily - Burgundy
    Mary C. - Chile
    Rodolfo - New Zealand
    Sherry - Oregon

    Thanks for those that have taken themselves from the going list in a timely manner, so others on the wait list could take a spot.


    Please bring a pen / pencil to rank the wines, as we will try to rank them using blind tasting, so the label or location of the wine does not influence the ranking.


    Look forward to a fun evening of tasting and socializing.

    1 · August 4

    • Rodolfo

      Also looking forward to a very close contest from all those that have volunteered to bring a wine bottle. Plenty to talk and discuss once we have tasted and ranked all the Pinot from its different region.

      August 4

  • sharon

    oops....forgot I'd scheduled an outpatient medical procedure for the same day....hoping someone from the waitlist will be able to take my spot...looking forward to joining you at another event in the near future.

    August 4

  • Donna R.

    Rodolfo, I saw someone cancelled. How is it looking for me on Wait List? I agree it is a safe walk to Le Grenier from Union Station. Last time I went there i took a cab back to the Metro after dark.

    August 2

    • mary c.

      Good to know, Donna

      August 2

    • Rodolfo

      Donna, you have already made it to the "going" list for this event.

      August 2

  • mary c.

    Does anyone know if it's a safe walk from Union Station to the restaurant? Anyone want to meet up at the station and walk together?

    August 2

    • Rodolfo

      It's a safe walk as the H St corridor has changed considerably in the last few years with many restaurants in this area. You may also want to look at the bus schedule, as there is a bus stop a block from Le Grenier.

      August 2

    • mary c.

      Thanks Rodolpho and thank you for undertaking the planning of this more complicated Meet up so well. See you there.

      1 · August 2

  • Marga

    Sorry to cancel. A personal unavoidable matter came up today and I will not be able to attend. :-(

    August 1

  • Sherry

    Steve and I are still attending

    1 · July 31

  • Caroline

    I'm still planning on attending.

    1 · July 31

  • Rodolfo

    The usual reminder to update your RSVP if your plans of attending seem uncertain as we do have a large number of members on the wait list. I am waiting for confirmation from Caroline and Gary if you are still planning to attend. If your plans have changed. would like to open the spot to those waiting.


    The success of this event, is dependent that members are committed to their RSVP since we have clear roles for members for Team A and Team B. Please check my previous comment on Team A. Looking forward to a fun evening of tasting, learning and socializing ...

    July 31

  • mary c.

    yes Rodolpho I'm ready to attend

    1 · July 30

  • Rodolfo

    We are all set, that we now have a Pinot from each of the 5 listed regions. To those on the "wait list", if we have someone from the "attending" list drop out, you will be notified of a spot. This is what we have at the moment, Alicia - California
    Sherry - Oregon
    Mary C. - Chile
    Rodolfo - New Zealand
    Linda - Burgundy

    The others are part of "Team B" (explained in the meetup details)

    1 · July 27

  • Donna R.

    I was on wait list at 6:22pm; than at I am "confirmed'. Correct?

    July 27

    • Rodolfo

      Donna, You are confirmed ..

      1 · July 27

  • Emily M.

    I hadn't read the whole invite because I am still getting used to the meet up app for mobile. If I get off the wait list ill bring a burgundy.

    1 · July 27

  • Carolyn

    I would pick Burgundy if you took me off the wait list :)

    1 · July 27

  • Linda

    I'll take Burgundy.

    1 · July 27

  • Rodolfo

    So far we have the following, regions selected:

    Alicia - California
    Sherry - Oregon (Received multiple responses)
    Mary C. - Chile
    Rodolfo - New Zealand
    ?? - Burgundy


    We need someone to select Burgundy. Also I will be checking with you mid-week to make sure your plans of attending has not changed, as Late cancellation/no show from any member will certainly take the fun out of this event, and importantly take a spot away from those on the wait list.

    July 27

  • mary c.

    I'll bring Chile

    1 · July 27

  • Donna R.

    What a fabulous idea! I will be a member of Team B. Can't wait.

    1 · July 27

  • Caroline

    I'll bring a wine from Oregon, as well. Look forward to my first event with this group!

    1 · July 27

  • Sherry

    Will bring something from Oregon

    1 · July 27

  • Alicia C.

    Love this idea! I'll be happy to bring something from California!

    1 · July 27

    • Rodolfo

      Marga, Please select another region as you have also indicated CA in your response. Adding a comment, here will let others see your response so they can pick a different region.

      July 27

  • Rodolfo

    RSVP announcement will be sent on Sunday July 27th.

    July 26

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We just grab a coffee and speak French. Some people have been coming every week for months... it creates a kind of warmth to the group.

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