Carneros Archives - Page 2 of 2 - Please The Palate
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This story originally appeared in California Winery Advisor. Carneros sits at the base of both Napa and Sonoma. In fact, Carneros is the only AVA in the United States that is located in two counties. With 8,000 acres planted, the majority of vines are planted on the Sonoma side. Carneros is a cool-climate appellation that is influenced by the San Francisco Bay. It is known for chardonnay, pinot noir and sparkling wine production. There are thirty wineries located in Carneros and here are six unique tasting experiences you can have to get to know the wines and the region. schug-7 Schug | 602 Bonneau Rd, Sonoma, CA 95476 Try their wine: Schug Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2014 Every winery has a story to tell. Sign up for a tour and tasting at Schug to learn its history. Schug was started by pinot noir pioneer Walter Schug in 1980. A third generation winemaker from Germany, where his father ran the first pinot noir estate, Shug was raised on pinot noir. He applied for an internship in Bakersfield and emigrated with his family in 1961. After working for Julian Gallo, Shug went to Joseph Phelps Winery in 1970 where he created the infamous Insignia. Shug started his own label in 1980 focusing on pinot noir, and in 1989 opened the winery that you can visit today.
Oh how I love Pinot Noir!  With descriptors that range from black and/or red cherry, raspberry, strawberry and currant to mushroom, earth, forest, smoke, incense and spice, Pinot Noir shines when paired with food.  At the end of January, the 3rd Annual Southern California Pinot Days took place at Barker Hanger in Santa Monica.  With close to 100 producers, there were Pinots from Central Coast, Northern California, Oregon and Burgundy to taste.  With only a couple hours to taste, here are just a few of my favorites: