VARIETAL:  Pinot Noir


REGION: California


PRICE: $9.99



In the spirit of Galentine’s and Valentine’s Day, I chose a red wine for TJ Tuesday. This week’s selection was a Pinot Noir bottled in Napa, California called Cotillion. What made me choose this bottle? In addition to the interesting label, I noticed that the grapes were sourced from three different regions of California: Monterrey, Sonoma and Santa Barbara. I couldn’t wait to experience this blend!

I poured the lovely crimson colored wine into my glass and let the magic occur. As I swirled it around, I noticed notes of black cherry and plum with hints of vanilla ever so often. Wanting optimal flavor, I decided to let the glass sit and open up a few minutes. I didn’t go to the trouble of decanting the bottle, but I have found that wines with a bolder nose usually have different flavors and fragrance emerge the longer they are in contact with air.

What’s the saying, “ patience is a virtue?” Patient is not a characteristic I would use to describe myself. After leaving my glass for five or so minutes, I was so intrigued by the aroma that I had to give it a taste. Here are some observations I had while sipping this California blend:

  • Medium Body

  • Notes of dark fruit were more prevalent as the wine opened up

  • Spicy/peppercorn finish

  • Hint of tobacco

  • Bold and flavorful compared to pinots that I’ve had previously

  • Light Tannins

Verdict:  One thing I enjoy about TJ Tuesday is the surprise and experience of a new bottle of wine. Of course, I’ve had my fair share of atrocious bottles, but every now and then you uncover an obscure gem. Cotillion exceeded all of my expectations of a Pinot Noir and surprised me with a spicy finish. The bottle of went down way to easy and I’ve actually made my way back to Trader Joe’s for a second bottle. If that’s not an indication of how much I enjoyed it, I don’t know what is!