2006,Valle Central, Chile. $7.65 for 750 ml
Here’s a curious situation: I was all ready to do some research on the Valle Central region of Chile for your (and my own) edification, and I should probably still do this….
But I thought I should check out Pepperwood’s website first. So I googled the brand and perused their history.
Apparently, the company that produces Pepperwood Grove started off with an Italian immigrant named Samuele who moved to California and began a winery at the start of the 20th century. The business passed down the family line and today, the “3 Loose Screws Wine Company” produces varietal wines under an assorted number of brands such as Smoking Loon, Pepperwood Grove and Screw Kappa Napa.
How cozy, right? Well, I’m sure it is, but what confuses me is that my wine says, “Valle Central, Chile.” On the website, the “Three Loose Screws Wine Company” avers their Pepperwood Grove Pinot Noir ( with “notes of rose water and cherry preserves”) as having been grown in the [very specific?] appellation of “California”.
Is it just me, or does there seem to be another continent involved on my bottle of wine?
I researched the Pepperwood Pinot (“PP”) some more and found other reviews of the PP hailing from Italy, Australia and (of course) California. Huh.
In any case, whether the wine is from Australia, Chile, Italy, California or the tundra of Siberia, what I’m here to do is tell you of the taste. And I don’t take my duty lightly. So I put away the globe, uncorked the Pinot, poured a glass and gave it a sniff. The smell was actually not to my liking. It smelled a bit sour or tart.Moving on, I took a sip. The flavor was much more pleasant than the smell and had a bit more body than I expected. There was an undercurrent of sweetness to the wine that I’m not sure if I cared for or not, but there was also a pleasant bite of acidity and a deeper taste that left me interested. And while the Pepperwood Pinot tasting notes cited a gamut of cherry, rose water, plum, clove, strawberry and “earthy tones” flavors, I don’t think I caught all of that. Honestly, I don’t think this wine was that complex.
Bottom line? The 2006 Pepperwood Grove Pinot Noir from Valle Central, Chile isn’t bad if you’re not expecting anything in particular. I’m not a big Pinot fan, but I get the feeling that if I were, I might be rather disappointed. However, if you’re just interested in trying different wines and are curious, I say give it a try. It’s certainly not one of my favorites, but, for the price, it’s worth the experience I think.
Besides, it’s kind of a sci-fi, Doctor-Who moment to be drinking a wine labeled from Chile, only to find no trace of such a thing on its own website…. Do you think there is a conspiracy involved?
wine’s website: www.donsebastianiandsons.com