Peggy and Jim Alberti love to grow Pinot Noir grapes on their property in the Santa Cruz Mountains—and they strive to produce the finest fruit possible.
My husband and I were invited to their bucolic retreat for a tour of the vineyard, and for several tastings of different vintages of their Pinot, all well-made and impressive. I especially loved the 2015 estate-grown-and-bottled Pinot. Every aspect, from the growing of the grapes to the finished product, is done completely by the Albertis—and only those who grow grapes and till the land know how difficult it is to get everything right.
“It’s got a monster aroma when you first open it,” says Peggy Alberti of their 2015 prime Pinot. “And it’s better for decanting.” Dark, intense and full-bodied, it’s brimming with delicious red fruit and earthy flavors of spice and caramel.
This 2015 Pinot Noir (around $30) can be found at Deer Park Wine & Spirits and restaurants such as Michael’s on Main and the Hollins House. Also, Deluxe Foods in Aptos carries Alberti Pinot. albertivineyard.com.
Farewell to Au Midi
Au Midi, the lovely French bistro in Aptos which has always served the most outstanding food, will be closing on Oct. 28 after 10 years. The good news is that their new and much larger location is a short drive away at 476 Tyler St., Monterey. In the meantime, owners Muriel and Michel Loubiere will have “numerous special dinners to thank everyone who made us so welcome.” aumidi.com.
A Reserve Tasting with premium Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays from 20 winemakers of the Santa Cruz Mountains will take place from 6-9 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 13 at the Hollins House. Enjoy a strolling dinner and bid on magnum bottles. Tickets are $80 and include admission to Pathway to Pinot Paradise Wine Trail. Other Pinot Paradise events include a technical session at the Scotts Valley Hilton from 9 a.m. to noon on Oct. 14; a Pinot Picnic in the Park at Quail Hollow Ranch, also on Oct. 14; and Pathway to Pinot Paradise on Oct. 15. For more information, visit the Santa Cruz Mountains Winegrowers Association at scmwa.com.