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2012 Clos de la Tech "Estate" Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir (Elsewhere $50) SKU #1426628

Price: Hidden

WE 94 VN 91 WS 91
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Staff Reviews

  • Adam Winkel
    By: Adam Winkel
    K&L Staff Member
    When it comes to the Santa Cruz Mountains, people like to generalize with images of rolling ocean fog and sensations of cool breeze, but there's something important that gets forgotten: THE SUN. There's a lot of sun exposure up there during the day. It's rugged and you'd better bring a hat or you're going to be sorry. This wine tastes like Pinot Noir's expression of bountiful sunlight on rocky ground. Sure, the Santa Cruz Mountains terroir maintains acidity, keeps the alcohol modest, and maintains savor to balance fruit. The soy-umami savor and dark fruit in this bottle are a unique Pinot expression and worthy of merit, but the big and finely polished tannins are what's worth writing home about. That's where the high-end cultivation and winemaking really show.
  • Ryan Woodhouse
    By: Ryan Woodhouse
    K&L Staff Member
    Last year I was invited to visit Clos de la Tech by viticulturist David Goldfarb. I had heard about the vineyard before and tasted a hand full of wines, but nothing can prepare you to see this place with your own eyes, it is simply one of the most spectacular and dramatic vineyard sites in all of California. The vines cling to incredibly steep slopes some 1700 feet up in the Santa Cruz Mountains on a finger of land extending west towards the pacific. The slopes are more like something you would see in the Mosel, not California! Some blocks of the vineyard are so steep they're farmed with a one-of-a-kind "tractor" that is attached to cables in order to negotiate the vertigo inducing hillsides! The vineyard is planted in a very high density layout modeled on many domains in Burgundy. Farming is very hands-on and meticulous. My head still spinning from the sheer majesty of the site we stepped into the equally impressive underground winery caves. All winemaking is done underground in microvinification tanks with some of the most high tech (figures) equipment I've seen anywhere. The philosophy here is very much guided by traditional Burgundian techniques: whole cluster, foot-treading, small open top native ferments and no filtration. But they also experiment with revolutionary concepts such as aroma recapture and fermenters individually analysed and controlled by silicon chip processors. The wines are also given very extended ageing prior to release with 2012/2013 wines being the current releases. The result, captured here in the 2012 release is an intense Pinot Noir with with layers of dark fruit, loganberry, black raspberry, spiced plum. Loamy earth and woodsy spices are dusted throughout, giving a savory aspect to the deep, hearty fruit. The texture is rich and soft from the extended maturation, some forest floor notes show through on the finish. Given all the things I've described above, we got an absolutely screaming deal on this wine and took every last case available to us. Our special price is less than 50% of the typical retail.


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