In this episode of IntoWineTV, host Lisa Kolenda and wine experts Bartholomew Broadbent, Loren Sonkin, and Edward Ruiz convene at one of San Francisco's finest restaurants, Incanto, to taste and discuss wines from wineries referenced in the movie Sideways.
Theme: Wines from Sideways
Wine: 2005 Sea Smoke Southing Pinot Noir ($50)
Region: Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara County, California
Alcohol content: 14.7%
Varietals: 100% Estate Grown Pinot Noir
Sideways Connection: The director, Andrew Payne had been a fan of Sea Smoke wines. When deciding to do the movie, he wanted to include Sea Smoke wine and to shoot some of the scenes on their estate vineyard. As the project progressed however, the filming date slid dangerously close to harvest. As they only have one chance each year to do what they do (without distractions), they had to let him know that filming on their vineyard was not going to be possible…..but they sent his assistant a couple of bottles for use in the movie if they liked. The rest, as they say, is history.
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Background: For years, vintners have coveted a stretch of land in the western end of Santa Barbara’s Santa Rita Hills AVA known to have the perfect microclimate, soils, and exposure to grow world-class Pinot Noir. In 1999, fulfilling a long-held dream of owner Bob Davids, this sought-after stretch of land became Sea Smoke Vineyard. At Sea Smoke, our sole objective is to produce the best Pinot Noir possible from our unique vineyard site. Located on south-facing hillside bluffs, our estate vineyard benefits from excellent sun exposure – producing grapes with optimum flavor, color and tannin development. The heat generated during the day is moderated each evening by a marine fog layer (sea “smoke”), which travels up the Santa Ynez River canyon, cooling the vines and resulting in a longer ripening period. This extended ‘hang time’ allows the grape tannins and seeds to fully ripen prior to harvest, creating wines that are rich and supple.
Our pursuit of great Pinot Noir can also be seen in the meticulous management of our vineyard. We strive for low crop yields and small grape clusters of intense flavor. To this end, our rich clay soils are planted with ten, top-quality Pinot Noir clones on vigor-reducing rootstocks. While we employ the latest technology in the vineyard to help us achieve vine balance and vigor reduction, we also recognize that technology is no replacement for skilled people. Every one of our vines receives personal handling from our vineyard crew six to seven times each year - every vine. As stewards of this remarkable piece of land, we are also dedicated to its long-term wellbeing. In this spirit, we have been farming Sea Smoke sustainably since 2003 as a member of the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance. In addition, we began cultivating a special 12-acre block of our vineyard using biodynamic practices in 2005.
Wine Notes: The 2005 Sea Smoke Southing Pinot Noir shows elegant fruit, a rich middle palate, firm tannins and Sea Smoke Vineyard’s signature cool climate acidity. Aromas of wild blueberries, violets and a subtle dustiness are characteristic of this wine. We recommend decanting thirty to sixty minutes prior to drinking, particularly if consumed before 2009.
Bartholomew Broadbent, CEO of Broadbent Selections. Bartholomew was named as one of the "fifty most influential people in the wine world" by Decanter Magazine. He is also widely considered to be one of the world's foremost authorities on Port and Madeira. Learn more about Bartholomew Broadbent.
Edward Ruiz, Wine Director at San Francisco's Incanto Restaurant.
Location: Incanto Italian Restaurant & Wine Bar, Situated in the heart of one of San Francisco's most charming residential neighborhoods, Incanto's rustic Italian setting, with its handcrafted stone, antique brick and woodwork, 16th century Latin parchments, and private dining room dedicated to poet Dante Alighieri, provides a uniquely warm and inviting dining environment.
Incanto's daily-changing menu honors old-world traditions including house-cured meats, unusual regional pastas, fresh local seafood and a commitment to sustainably grown and harvested produce. Incanto's award-winning wine program features one of the most diverse Italian wine lists in the United States and an ever-changing lineup of more than twenty wines by the glass, half-glass, half-liter, and flight.