In 1998, the Zilkha family took over a vineyard planted by Maison Deutz (one of Champagne's top houses) in California’s Arroyo Grande Valley – setting for the Oscar-winning film Sideways. They changed the name of the estate to Laetitia (Latin for ‘happiness’) and “got serious about quality,” says Robert Parker.
Happiness for their super-talented winemaker, Eric Hickey, is time spent among those same historic vines – especially now. We're in the middle of a real Golden Age in California wine, thanks to a string of truly fantastic vintages (the latest of which is 2015).
For his Vineyard Select, Eric chose fruit from his favorite plots. Then, he aged the wine in fine French oak, courtesy of renowned barrel masters François Frères. The result is truly a "happy" ending: beautifully ripe Pinot with pretty aromas of raspberry and spice. The lovely sweet fruit (raspberry, cherry, pomegranate) on the palate lingers through the long, velvety finish.
This is the perfect partner for a cheese plate, roast turkey, meaty fish (try tuna or salmon) and more. Try chilling it in the fridge for 15-20 minutes prior to serving, to really bring out its silkiness and refreshing, bright-fruited characteristics.