The 2010 Vinum Cellars Pinot Noir is sourced from sustainably farmed long term contracted vineyards in Monterey, California. The label says this is a California Pinot Noir which means that the grapes came from more than one grape growing AVA, but their website says Monterey. Vinum Cellars is a virtual winery, they lease the facilities at Napa Wine Company to produce their wines. This allows them to control costs and have access to state of the art equipment. This Pinot Noir was aged for 14 months in mostly used French oak barrels, this type of aging is fairly rare for a wine that lists at $14 and I found on sale for $9.99. The average cost of one French oak barrel is over $1,000, other types of oak are cheaper, but it is the general consensus that French oak is the best for aging wine. The alcohol content is either 13.5% as stated on the bottle or 13.9% or 14% as stated at various places on their website.
The color is clear shiny see thru cherry red with black highlights. The first aroma that hits your nose is mushroom and herbs, spearmint spice is next and cherries bring up the rear. This is a Pinot Noir with a light, delicate touch. It tastes of cherry, a slap of oak vanilla, plum and an array of spices. The mid palate brings some sweet raspberry and herbal tea. This an inexpensive Pinot Noir with good length, if you take the time to let them develop, you will get a quality parade of flavors passing by your taste buds. The finish is cherries and herbs, it is rather soft, but it does last.
The 2010 Vinum Cellars is quality, interesting, inexpensive Pinot Noir. It was not long ago that most sub $20 Pinot’s where fairly bland, fruit forward, light weight wines, but that has changed in recent years. Today,inexpensive Pinot Noir wines tend to be some of the most interesting and worthy wines in the price range.