Twomey Harvest Celebration – 2014 Single Vineyard Pinot Noir Wine & Food Pairing

On Saturday, Twomey Cellars rolled out the 2014 Single Vineyard Pinot Noirs. They held a harvest celebration which let the wine club members taste new releases. Membership has its benefits.

Twomey unveiled four new single vineyard pinots for 2014. Among them were, The Monument Tree, Last Stop, Soberanes and Bien Nacido.  Gourmet appetizers were prepared by Silver Oak’s executive chef Dominic Orsini. Each appetizer was created to pair with each of the single vineyard pinots.

Twomey spoils its members by keeping its events complementary, unlike many other wine clubs.  Upon arrival we were welcomed with a splash of 2015 Twomey sauvignon blanc, my go-to wine. We were then presented with special pinot glasses and perused each of the food and wine pairing stations, in order, based on the profile of the wines. First up was the 2014 Twomey Monument Tree Vineyard, an Anderson Valley Pinot Noir.

Tuna Niçoise Tartines paired with 2014 Twomey Monument Tree Vineyard Anderson Valley Pinot Noir
Tuna Niçoise Tartines paired with 2014 Twomey Monument Tree Vineyard Anderson Valley Pinot Noir

I find that the Anderson Valley pinots tend to be on the lighter side. The Monument Tree Vineyard is located at the cooler end of the valley close to the Pacific Ocean. My first taste was light with a hint of cherry and spice. It is always a challenge to imagine how the mature version of the wine will taste.

The Monument Tree was paired with a Tuna Niçoise Tartine: slice of tuna, hard boiled egg, asparagus, wax bean, tomato, micro greens on a crostini. The tartine brought out the earthy quality but also kept the spice. The appetizer wasn’t too overpowering which let the flavors of the wine take over the palate.

Fontina & Prosciutto Arancini with Tomato Aioli paired with 2014 Last Stop Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir - Twomey Harvest Celebration
Fontina & Prosciutto Arancini with Tomato Aioli paired with 2014 Last Stop Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir – Twomey Harvest Celebration

The next pinot is the newest addition to the Twomey pinot family of vineyards, the 2014 Last Stop Vineyard, a Russian River Valley Pinot Noir. It’s called “Last Stop” because the old Petaluma-Santa Rosa rail line that used to carry weekenders up from San Francisco, ends at the property. This was a delight to taste considering only 78 cases were produced. It had a nice ruby color and rose petals on the nose. I tasted a blend of red fruit as well as a nice tart quality. It had a long, lingering finish.

The Last Stop was paired with Fontina & Prosciutto Arancini with Tomato Aioli. This was my favorite of the four appetizers. The salty richness from the fontina and prosciutto leaves the wine with a sweeter and even longer finish. I think we will see interesting things from this wine as it ages.

Duck Confit Salad with Grilled Figs paired with 2014 Twomey Soberanes Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir
Duck Confit Salad with Grilled Figs paired with 2014 Twomey Soberanes Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

The third pinot was the 2014 Soberanes Vineyard, a Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir. Santa Lucia Highlands is located in the central coast, southeast of Monterrey. This is my favorite pinot region in all of California. The Soberanes has a beautiful pomegranate color. I experienced a nice texture, a little bite  and a plethora of red fruit. The Soberanes was paired with a Duck Confit Salad and Grilled Figs. The duck had a nice asian flair and its saltiness brought out different flavors in the wine. The asian slaw was refreshing and the smoke on the fig highlighted the acidity in the pinot.

The fourth and final pinot was the 2014 Bien Nacido Vineyard, a Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir. This is the most southern AVA of the four vineyards, located in Northern Santa Barbara county and San Luis Obispo county.

Lamb Skewers with Olive & Charred Lemon Relish paired with 2014 Twomey Bien Nacido Vineyard Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir
Lamb Skewers with Olive & Charred Lemon Relish paired with 2014 Twomey Bien Nacido Vineyard Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir

This was my favorite pinot of the day and is always very consistent between vintages.  I love the nose on this wine. It is a combination of earthy and fruity with hints of leather. It is the bigger of the four wines with black cherry, mushrooms and a fruit driven finish. This wine was paired with Lamb Skewers and a Olive & Charred Lemon Relish.

Since I don’t eat lamb, I took one for the team for the sake of this blog. This lamb had a nice cook, and grilling it added a flavorful smokiness. The relish was tart and consisted of preserved, grilled Meyer lemon, olives, fennel bulb, fennel frond, olive oil, salt and pepper. The richness and gamey quality of the lamb brought out the fruit and a silkier finish in the wine.

2015 Twomey Sauvignon Blanc - Harvest Celebration
2015 Twomey Sauvignon Blanc – Harvest Celebration

The 2014 new release pinot noirs show exceptional possibilities and I will be excited to see how they change and mature throughout the next year.  I also can’t wait to see what Twomey introduces at next year’s wine club harvest party.

Every winery has their version of a wine club, but not all wine clubs are equal. The Twomey wine club has some of the best perks in the Napa Valley and harvest celebration was no exception. If you are interested in Twomey’s wine club, check it out here, you won’t be disappointed.

Enjoy… Wine Ho

 

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