2019 Intent Wines, Pinot Noir, Golden Fleece, Anderson Valley.
A beautifully pure and vivid Pinot Noir from the Anderson Valley, the Intent Wines Golden Fleece 2019 is wonderfully balanced, aromatic and satiny on the palate with bright Italian cherry, plum, wild berry and strawberry fruits along with purring and pulsating acidity, mineral tones, a light earthy/savory element, tea spices, soft oak and lingering rose petals. I featured Intent’s earlier vintage of Pinot and their Pinot Gris and was impressed with the quality and this Golden Fleece lifts this label to the next and I highly recommend checking out these wines, all coming from organic, biodynamic and holistically farmed sites and made in hand crafted small lots. The dark ruby hued Golden Fleece comes from a mountain top, organically farmed vineyard on the east side of the Anderson Valley that sees cool Ocean breezes, good sun exposure and allows the grapes to show off terroir with clarity and small yielding concentration with moderate alcohol and energy in the glass. The marine sediment soils with sandstone from being an ancient sea give these grapes a perfect setting to made world class Pinot Noir, along the lines of Drew, Baxter and others that make Anderson Valley their home.

Intent’s winemaker/owner Patrick Callagy, a California Culinary Academy trained chef and turned winemaker, launched his personal project Intent Wines in 2017 with a focus on organic and sustainable vineyard, mainly in the cooler climate zones of Anderson Valley and the Sonoma Coast. Callagy has made a solid set of initial offerings including his tasty Alsatian style Pinot Gris, as well as savory Northern Rhone style Syrah, a stylish Rosé and a set of beautiful Pinot Noirs, like this Golden Fleece. As I noted in my last review of Intent Wines, Patrick met winemaker Eric Sussman in 2002, post graduation, when Sussman started his now famous Radio Coteau winery, after helping out with that harvest and after a few years of extremely long hours, Patrick’s curiosity, commitment and persistence paid off when he became Radio Coteau’s first employee. That experience has paid off and these Intent Wines are very deserving of your attention, especially this bottling, the wines are available at Patrick’s website and I suggest getting on the mailing list for future wines as well, these 2019s are exceptional and I expect the 2021s to be gems as well! The winemaking is restrained and Callagy employs native yeast fermentations, gentle macerations, some whole cluster and aging in mostly neutral and well used ranch oak barrels to promote transparency, as this exciting Golden Fleece Pinot shows!
($56 Est.) 93 Points, grapelive

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