dining_roudonsmithPinot Noir 2008

Roudon-Smith is one of the better-known wineries in the area. Their wines are to be found in good wine stores and on the menu of many local restaurants. If you haven’t visited the winery’s tasting room down the long and winding Bean Creek Road in Scotts Valley, then you’re in for a treat. Hidden away under a redwood canopy, it’s in a beautiful bucolic setting. And some good wines await you when you get there.

The Pinot Noir 2008 Santa Cruz Mountains Private Reserve ($30) is a resoundingly good wine that will complement a wide variety of food. This is the sort of wine I like to enjoy on a cold night because it’s robust and hearty–the sort of wine that warms the cockles of your heart. Bold flavors of cherries and cinnamon–with just the right amount of toasted oak–fill the mouth with characteristic earthiness. Here is a wine that would grace anybody’s table. Winemaker Brandon Armitage really shows his winemaking skills in this 2008 Pinot.

Roudon-Smith Winery, 2364 Bean Creek Road, Scotts Valley. 438-1244. RoudonSmith.com. Open Saturday noon to 4:30 p.m. and for group appointments.

Wine Events:

Roudon-Smith will be putting on its fifth Holiday Party on Saturday, Dec. 4 from noon to 5 p.m. Local bell ringers will be there playing all the classic holidays songs, and there will be tasting samples of Theo organic chocolate to pair with Roudon-Smith’s wines. Tasting fee is $15 per person, which includes souvenir wine glass, chocolates and wine tasting. Wine club members pay $5 for themselves and a total of four guests.

Tasting Room Tuesdays at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose

On two Tuesdays every month until August 2011, San Jose’s most iconic hotel is featuring wines of the Santa Cruz Mountains. A winery representative will pour and be available for “vine talk” from 5-7 p.m. in the Lobby Lounge. Dec. 7 and 14 features Sarah’s Vineyard, and Jan. 11 and 25 features Poetic Cellars. Info: scmwa.com.

Winemaker Wednesdays at Shadowbrook

Martin Ranch will be the featured winery on Wednesday, Dec. 8 in the Rock Room of Shadowbrook Restaurant from 5-8 p.m. Info: scmwa.com.

Windy Oaks Winemaker’s Dinner at Cin-Cin in Los Gatos

Chef Chris Schloss has created a beautiful menu to pair with the wonderful wine of Windy Oaks on Wednesday, Dec. 8 at 6:30 p.m.  Cost is $90 per person exclusive of tax and gratuity. To RSVP call the restaurant directly at (408) 354-8006, cincinwinebar.com.

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