Pinot Blanc, Los Carneros, 2012


Pinot Blanc, Los Carneros, 2012
Pinot Blanc, Los Carneros, 2012
Robert Sinskey Vineyards
D o yo u R e a l i z e ?
by Rob Sinskey
... It’s hard to make the good things last!
an something be both simple and complex at the
same time? Could letting it “be” result in something better, or more interesting, than perfection?
I was listening to an interview with Wayne Coyne
(of the innovative art/punk/psycho rock band,
The Flaming Lips), the other night as he discussed
his early inspirations, including Strawberry Fields
Forever - a song of superlative craftsmanship, yet
loose, with technical mistakes that, if the song were
recorded today, would have been “cleaned up,” i.e.
auto-tuned, and “perfected” before being released. A
process that probably would have destroyed the song or at least rendered it less memorable.
“It’s so easy to make it perfect,” Coyne said. “Anyone can make it perfect - perfect is the enemy of
almost anything good in the world... They [musicians like the Beatles, Tom Jones or the Rolling
Stones] tried very hard to make it as good as they
could, knowing it was never going to be perfect,
because people were playing it.”
His point was that musicians strove for perfection
because perfection, without the aid of modern
technology, was not achievable in those days.
That’s not to say the music was completely naïve
or accidental. The craft had to be good enough to
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express the idea, but the delusion of perfection
didn’t get in the way either. They gave their best
effort but, being human, they reached for an
emotional/visceral peak that was more important
than getting it technically correct... they walked
the razor’s edge between craft and emotion.
The Flaming Lips wrote a song a few years ago
called, Do You Realize. It is a simple song... almost
childlike, yet poignant and honest with an underlying, universal truth that could make all but the most
hardened soul want to cry.
“And instead of saying all of your goodbyes - let them know
You realize that life goes fast
It’s hard to make the good things last
You realize the sun doesn’t go down
It’s just an illusion caused by the world
spinning round.”
The song is full of rough edges and broken vocals
that only make it more endearing... and the contagious musical simplicity helped it become an
underground hit. It tells a story of a simple truth
delivered in an honest way. A lesson we can apply
to any craft... including wine.
RSV vineyard raised lambs
Wine Growing Notes
A simple truth, delivered in an honest way... this is what RSV Pinot Blanc aspires to.
Pinot Blanc is not known as the most complex grape - yet, when grown in the right climate, picked before it gets too ripe, fermented delicately - unencumbered with extraneous flavors, and allowed to express its strengths of crisp fruit and elegant texture... it
can deliver pure, visceral pleasure - and it can be an absolute joy at the table.
The 2012 vintage was as close to ideal as one could expect in the natural world. One
of the driest winters on record was saved by a “March Miracle” spring rain that laid the
groundwork for a practically perfect flowering season. The exceptional growing year
culminated in just the right ripening weather for concentrated flavor development,
bright acidity and lower sugar that resulted in relatively modest alcohol levels in the
finished wine.
RSV Pinot Blanc is grown in three of RSV’s CCOF certified organic vineyards in the
Carneros region: The Three Amigos, OSR and Scintilla Sonoma.
The grapes were night picked and delivered to the winery in the cold, wee hours of
the morning where they were whole-cluster pressed and stainless steel fermented
‘till dry. It was allowed to rest on the lees before being racked and bottled. The simple philosophy is to grow it well and allow the purity of the wine to express itself.
Wine Tasting Notes
by Jeff Virnig & Rob Sinskey
The Pinot Blanc of the near idyllic 2012 vintage exhibits aromas of blossom and
citrus. The wine has nice intensity, beautiful structure, and elegant balance. The
grapes come from three of RSV’s CCOF certified organic Los Carneros vineyards.
The northern OSR property contributes “white flower” characteristics with a rich
palate. The Three Amigos Vineyard contributes beautiful kaffir lime/citrus notes
and an appley crispness for a mid-palate zing, while the more wind-swept Scintilla
Sonoma Vineyard offers a lingering finish of peach and lychee. Enjoy with food!
T h e R a zor ’ s Ed g e
Subtle citrus, melon, and green apple fruit with a
razor edge of acidity makes RSV ‘s 2012 Pinot Blanc
“pop” in your mouth. The racy acidity is a perfect foil
for the flaky, tender fish nestled in a mix of aromatic
vegetables, meaty beans and freshly chopped herbs.
A razor edge is also important in the knife you use to
finely dice the vegetables. The smaller they are, the
more their flavor can wrap around the beans.
Until the Next Wine....
Slow-cooked Halibut with Cannellini Beans, Aromatic Vegetables and
Castelvetrano Olives
Cooking the fish at low heat keeps it tender and moist in this flavorful one dish meal. For vegetarians, or as
a side dish, use a mix of beans and sprinkle with grated Parmesan before baking. Serves 2 to 4
1 pound Halibut filet or line caught Cod, about 1 inch thick
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups cooked cannellini or butter beans
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 stalks celery, trimmed and chopped finely
3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped finely
1 medium shallot, minced
1/2 cup pitted Castelvetrano olives, chopped finely
2 teaspoons finely chopped oregano
1/2 lemon
Herb Sauce, Recipe follows
1. Cut the halibut into 2 equal pieces, season with salt and pepper, reserve in refrigerator.
2. Place the beans in a medium bowl.
3. Heat a medium sauté pan over medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil then the celery and carrots.
Cook until vegetables start to brown, add shallots and olives and continue to cook until shallots are golden and
vegetables are caramelized. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Fold the vegetables into the beans. Add the oregano and a squeeze of lemon. Place the mixture in a cazuela
or similar ceramic baking dish. Reserve at room temperature.
5. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
6. Remove the fish from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes. Nestle the pieces of
fish into the beans. Drizzle with olive oil and place in the oven. Slowly cook for 35 minute or until fish is opaque
and flakes easily. Remove from oven and drizzle with herb sauce. Serve immediately.
HERB Sauce
This versatile, vivid green sauce is also delicious spooned over roasted vegetables, chicken, pork and steak.
Yield: About 1/3 cup
2 tablespoons finely chopped flat leaf parsley
2 teaspoons finely chopped oregano
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Pinch salt
1. Mix together the herbs and olive oil in a small bowl.
2. Add the lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Stir well. Reserve at room temperature until ready to use.
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Fine Wines. Organic Vines.
Robert Sinskey Vineyards
6320 Silverado Trail
Napa, CA 94558
Winemaker: Jeff Virnig
Recipes: Maria Helm Sinskey
Photos and Text: Rob Sinskey
Vineyard Manager: Debby Zygielbaum
[email protected]