The 2011 Blackstone Pinot Noir is sourced from vineyards in more than one California grape growing AVA, they also add 6% Syrah and 5% Petite Sirah to make up for whatever the Pinot Noir grapes lack. This Pinot Noir is aged in mostly new (90% new) French and American oak barrels for 5 months. This is a Pinot Noir that should be found for under ten dollars and the alcohol content is 13.5%.
The color is a see-thru, clear, cherry red. The nose is pretty good, loads of Pinot Noir funk, mushroom, herbs, cherry, tea leaves and black pepper. The Blackstone Pinot Noir isn’t a particularly great Pinot Noir, but it is very serviceable as a light bodied red wine with a bit more complexity than usual. As a Pinot Noir it is too watery up front with a bit too much spice and herbs on the mid palate, an off balanced Pinot. But as a light, inexpensive Red, it has light red berry flavors, followed by a unexpected and welcome blast of texture and spice, it is all a matter of perception. The finish is mild and fades quickly but shadows of the finish linger on and on.
The 2011 Blackstone Pinot Noir is a very drinkable, useful Red, it is just not a wine that Pinot Noir affectionados are going to flip over. But, at it’s selling price, I found it for under $5 and it usually should be in the $7 to $10 range, not being a wonderful Pinot Noir isn’t all that much of a set back, as long as it drinks well and has some interesting flavors. If you are looking for a bargain Pinot, look elsewhere, if you simply want a inexpensive, light bodied Red wine, the Blackstone will do just fine.