The Old Soul Pinot Noir 2014 is Pinot Noir with Zinfandel and Merlot blended in, sourced from vineyards in the Lodi AVA at the northern end of the Central Valley Region of Northern California. Lodi is located east of the San Francisco Bay, south and east of Napa. The temperature can be very warm during the day, but Pacific Ocean winds moderate the climate. Old Soul is a label from Oak Ridge Winery, the oldest winery in Lodi and is owned and operated by the Maggio and Reynolds families who have 5 generations of vineyard and wine-making experience. Different lots of this Pinot were fermented at varying temperatures to bring out divergent characteristics in each portion. The individual lots of Pinot were then aged in oak for various lengths of time to bring the desired oak influence, the seperate lots were then blended together. The alcohol content is 13.0%.
The color is a little dark for a Pinot Noir, it is a see-thru cherry red with blue/black highlights. The nose is fresh cherries, raspberry, herbs, mint, a little mushroom and violets. This is a fruit forward Pinot Noir, well-balanced with an interesting mix of flavors. It starts with ripe cherry, blueberry, tart strawberry and a dash of herbs. The mid-palate shows extracted blackberry, dusty chocolate powder and mushroom. The acidity is balanced and the tannins add structure but otherwise stay out-of-the-way. The finish is full and slowly fades away.
The Old Soul Pinot Noir 2014 is a crowd pleaser of a Pinot. It has tons of flavor, with just enough Pinot Noir funk and very solid acidity and balance. Now, the Old Soul is not made in a style that is going to have fans of Burgundian Pinot Noir jumping for joy, but if they give it a chance and have an open mind (what are the odds of that), they just might see Old Soul Pinot’s virtues. This is not a light and delicate Pinot Noir, it has some heft to the body, but it has balanced acidity and length, which are the trademarks of a good Pinot Noir. This is a Pinot that Malbec, Shiraz and Zinfandel drinkers will understand. As for pairings, the Old Souls has tons of flavor and enough structure to handle a variety of cuisine, right now I am thinking Carolina pulled pork will do just fine.