One Vineyard, Two Classic California Pinot Noirs

Monday, September 3, 2018

One of the most interesting parts of wine discovery is connecting the dots. Once you find something you like you can follow the producer, follow winemakers, explore the grape variety, or explore a region.

The two wines below come from a common vineyard: Gap's Crown in Sonoma.

Gap's Crownn Vineyard
East of Rohnert Park between Santa Rosa and Petaluma
Map from
You'll find grapes from Gap's Crown in bottlings from top Pinot Noir producers like Kosta Browne, Gary Farrell, MacPhail and others.

I recently enjoyed these bottlings from Black Kite and Sojourn tremendously but didn't realize until a few days later they were from the same vineyard.

2014 Black Kite Gap's Crown Pinot Noir
14.6% alcohol
292 Cases produced

Black Kite's "Kite's Rest" bottling is sourced from grapes from their estate vineyards in the Anderson Valley. It's been reliably outstanding and is the Black Kite wine I have the most experience with. The Gap's Crown bottling is similar stylistically, which is to say full of goregous cola notes and a pure brambly expression of California Pinot Noir. Not an off note in the bottle. Absolutely delicious.

95/100 WWP: Classic

2016 Sojourn Gap's Crown Pinot Noir
14.6% alcohol
1,350 Cases produced

In my 10 years writing about wine here at the Wellesley Wine Press, Sojourn Pinots have been the most reliably oustanding wines I've found. This Gap's Crown bottling is aligned with their luscious house style, with laser-beam focus on the palate. Light in color and body relative to its tremendous depth of flavor. What California Pinot Noir can be when at its best.

95/100 WWP: Classic

I bought the Black Kite from WineAccess as a one-time offer they ran. You can find their wines around at retail in most states, but if you want to try something specific it would be best to order direct.

I bought the Sojourn off their mailing list. It's one of the few I'm happy to order from again and again. Reasonable prices. Free shipping on 6+ bottles. 10% 12+ bottles.

California Pinot Noir continues to be my go-to category. It's delicious on its own, I love the flavor profile, and it pairs with just about anything.

Definitely check out more from Black Kite and Sojourn. And definitely Pinot Noir from Gap's Crown if you get a chance.


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