Pinot Noir – Mille Frere – Sonoma Coast
100% Pinot Noir, clones: 115, 667, 777. After an inspiring vintage series from their two best Pinot Noirs (Mill Station and Frere) ended in 2015, Peter Paul decided to continue in the spirit of what made those wines special by introducing a new flagship – Mille Frere 2016. They also explored a new vineyard source in the Petaluma Gap corridor, resulting in a bodacious Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir.
Harvested at night to preserve freshness and vibrancy, the grapes are carefully transported to open-top fermenters and gently punched down, followed by an undisturbed 14-monthlong maturation in 50% new French Oak. Seeing no racking, no fining, and no filtration, this beauty was bottled in Dec 2020.
Tasting Note 2019: Mille Freres invites attention with aromas of heavenly red and black fruits, knee-weakening florals, savory yumminess, and an underlying joyful spice note, akin to an Argentine tango. Richly textured, this wine plays on the palate with flavors of dark berry preserve, pomegranate, truffle, rose petal, and a finishing kiss of sweet herbs that recall cinnamon and cardamom. Fans of the seductive, velvety side of Pinot Noir (because there are many!) will be especially pleased. This is a compelling Pinot Noir, albeit, one that must play the protagonist for two vintages – unfortunately no Mille Freres was made in 2020.
About the Producer
Peter Paul Wines seeks to showcase the sunny, easygoing temperament of fruit grown in California without losing the more refined elements of the grape’s DNA and European heritage. Each of their wines presents the hallmark characteristics of the terroir, while hitting that sweet spot of ripe but not overblown, elegant but not anemic, with everything in proper proportion.
When Peter was a just a teenager in the early 1960s, his father purchased a case of Château d’Yquem on sale at $10 a bottle and he became hooked on wine before being old enough to buy it. Meanwhile a job in the financial services industry brought him to Southern California in 1975. Two years later, Peter “escaped” to northern California where wine country beckoned as it always does. Today, Peter is the CEO of Headlands Asset Management LLC, an investment management company he founded in 2008. But for Peter, becoming a vintner was clearly something that was going to happen sooner or later. In 2002, the first vintage of Peter Paul Wines was bottled. Over a decade and numerous critical scores and awards later, Peter Paul Wines is a well-respected yet small virtual California winery. With barely 2,000 cases produced annually, Peter Paul sources grapes from select vineyards in both Napa and Sonoma counties.
Martin Reyes is the GM and winemaker at Peter Paul Wines. A first-generation American, Martin is the first Master of Wine of Mexican descent. With a 16-year career as a respected buyer, importer, and educator, he has held influential roles in many sectors of the industry. Martin’s wine story began with an over-indulgent dinner while studying in Paris as a Stanford undergrad and, by 2003, he was stocking shelves at his local wine shop. After working the retail side for several years, Martin became the principal buyer for an importer operating prominent wine club programs for partners like The New York Times and Williams-Sonoma. In 2015, he was named one of Wine Enthusiast’s Top Forty under Forty Tastemakers. In his free time, Martin teaches WSET courses, attempts to become fluent in a fifth language, and raises his daughter trilingually, together with his wife in Vallejo, CA.
Trevor Smith acts as vineyard and winemaking consultant. Born and raised in Eugene, Oregon, he attended Texas A&M University and received a BA in History. After three years in the service, he began working in wine retail in Dallas, Texas before returning to Oregon and working on the production side. After winemaking stints in the Willamette Valley, Barossa Valley and Napa Valley he has settled in Sonoma County and joined the Peter Paul team in 2020.