There’s nothing like enjoying a complex bottle of wine on a beautiful day. I decided on a 2013 Pinot Meunier from Willakenzie Vineyards. They are known for producing quality wine at a great price point.
Pinot Meunier grows well here in Oregon as the varietal is more accepting of colder climates. Meunier has the same DNA fingerprint as Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris grapes, but is less acclaimed even though it’s a quiet workhorse for champagnes.
The nose presents a lot of acid, hints of black pepper, and some spice. There is also a strong jammy aroma. My first few sips present a mildly tart jam flavor, with some acid and tannins that coat the palate. While the acid and tannins are strong, they don’t overwhelm the palate too much.
I noticed the wine really opened up after breathing for a few hours. While the acid was still prominent, mild black pepper along with confected fruit notes helped balance the wine. This Meunier would pair well with shellfish, pork, or charcuterie.
You should be able to find this wine at any major grocery store, as the Lacroutes entrusted the Willakenzie Estate to Kendall Jackson back in 2016. It’s reasonably priced around $30 for a bottle.