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by Fred McMillin
Judy, Judy, Judy
1988—Some of California 's top vintners are rushing to buy land in Carneros, confirming that the region is one of the best for grape growing in the state...producing outstanding Pinot Noir.
...Kim Marcus in The Wine Spectator
The Rest of the Story
Buena Vista beat the rush. It acquired 1,000 Carneros acres back in 1984, at the southern end of the Sonoma Valley. Critical comment on the results: "Translucent Pinot of regal character with a rich, lingering aftertaste." (Balzer)
1995 Carneros Estate Pinot Noir
A final word about Judy. At U.C. -Davis she graduated with highest honors (enology). Subsequently her postgraduate training was a dream come true. She had two extended periods of working with the legendary winemaker André Tchelistcheff. I interviewed her a few years ago, and she's modest but very confident that she's mastered her craft. Watch what she does for Buena Vista.
Are Carneros wines actually distinctive? About the time Buena Vista was establishing the largest estate vineyard(s) in the district, U.C.-Davis set up a highly-disciplined study...blind tastings twice a day for about a week. Only one region showed consistent spicy, high cherry and fresh berry intensity. It was the Carneros. Case closed.
Note: For much more about the winery and their winemaker, see the Nov. 14, 1997 WineDay titled "The Count was Paramount".
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