Grapelive Latest: Nov. 30

Grapelive Daily Review

By Kerry Winslow

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seasmoke07s.gif2007 Sea Smoke Pinot Noir “Southing” Santa Rita Hills, Estate.
Sea Smoke looks to find its style now, without Kris Curran and the 2007 vintage does mark a big difference, Curran’s big up front wines are sure to get more attention, but this Pinot is much more subtle and lower in alcohol. It is hard to tell if maybe this vintage is better than earlier efforts, but it is more balanced and refined, and it is a much more fresh than the 2006 was, for sure. In time the Southing might fill out and get more interesting, though it is nice and complete now, so I’d put it away for another year or so. At this point, drink the much richer and complex 2004 and 2005 Sea Smokes if you still have any! The 2007 Sea Smoke Southing shows pretty fruit, leaning on red cherry, raspberry, cranberry and tart plum, all silky on the palate, with Asian spices, hints of tomato compote, cola, and lush vanilla. This wine seems to have everything to become a very fine wine, good fruit, acidity, smooth body and very nice smoky sweet oak shadings, it just doesn’t show the “Wow” factor, though it might just surprise given enough time to develop, we’ll have to wait and see. ($50-120 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive