Au Bon Climat La Bauge Pinot Noir 2012




A classic Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir, it is a wine of great aromatics and character showing cherry/cranberry fruit, rose petal, earth and spice. The key word is balance.

We are "hands-on" with our Pinot. Every Pinot Noir is fermented in 5 ton open-top fermenters, which are punched down once or twice daily. These punch downs breakup the cap of skins that rises to the surface into the juice so the fermentation process extracts the best part of the Pinot grapes. The wine is pressed to complete dryness and goes to barrel with moderate lees. Our “La Bauge” Pinot Noir is aged in 50% new French Oak Barrels made by François Frères in the heart of Burgundy in the small village of St. Romain. The wine was carefully racked in the spring and then aged another 20 months (24 months total). It was lightly fined with 4 egg whites per barrel, and then bottled unfiltered.Au Bon Climat has made Pinot Noir in Santa Barbara County for over 30 years. Our winemaking philosophy and winemaking practices have changed little over that time. Older equipment has been replaced by newer technologies, and better equipment improved the wines allowing for more gentle processing. We still hand pick and sort heavily in the vineyard. We still use open top fermenters which are “punched down” by hand. Our top Pinot Noirs are never pumped, only moved by gravity. These high end Pinots are aged in new French Oak. Our Pinot Noir is basically the same since 1982, only better.

2011 Isabelle, the 18th vintage, was blended in June of 2013 and bottled two months later. Some lots were fined, none were filtered. The wine reflects the vintage. The deep berry fruit is restrained so aromas of wild chaparral (similar to underbrush but wilder) and spices are currently prominent, but will integrate into a harmonious whole as the wine matures. Isabelle is put together to age. We have enjoyed many bottles from the late 1990s recently. Past favorites are 1995, 1997 and 1999. However, since the wine represents the best cuvées of each vintage, every year is a good year for Isabelle.

13.5% abv

Au Bon Climat La Bauge Pinot Noir 2012
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  • Au Bon Climat La Bauge Pinot Noir 2012