Three California Pinot Noir Suggestions

Belle Glos pic
Belle Glos

Based in Chicago, Patrick Borchard serves as CFO of the real estate investment trust Pangea Properties, which operates apartments in Chicago, Baltimore, and Indianapolis. In his free time, Patrick Borchard enjoys wine, with a special interest in pinot noirs from California and Oregon.

California produces some of the world’s best pinot noirs, many hailing from regions like the Sonoma Coast and the Anderson Valley. Forbes / Travel recently highlighted several notable California pinot noirs:

1) 2013 Belle Glos Clark and Telephone: From Santa Barbara, this wine combines dark berry fruits with cinnamon and cardamom spice in a blend that is both compact and elegant.

2) 2012 Sea Smoke Southing: Produced by the Sta. Rita Hills, this wine is a bit pricier but worth it because of the deep complexity of flavors, which include notes of spice, cherry, and rose petals. Some argue the plot of land these grapes are grown on is the finest in California.

3) 2013 Freeman Akiko’s Cuvee Sonoma Coast: This wine comes from a cooler climate and offers notes of violets, black cherry, and earth.


Barolo – A Classic DOCG of Italy’s Red Wine-Growing Piedmont Region

Patrick Borchard is a longtime Chicago real estate executive who leads Pangea Properties in investing in distressed residential properties. Also a wine aficionado, Patrick Borchard enjoys a diversity of California and Oregon products and has a particular interest in pinot noirs, meritages, and Barolos.

Located in the Piedmont region of Northern Italy, Barolo is the area’s most well-known Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG) and is highly regarded for its exquisite red wines.

Barolo was formalized as a DOCG appellation in the mid-1960s and comprises approximately 1,700 hectares. The landscape features picturesque villages that typically sit at the top of hills. The terroir, or natural environment, is exceptional for wine grape cultivation, with the continental climate providing the extended autumns and summers that Nebbiolo grapes require to attain full ripeness.

Barolo is distinct from its close cousin Barbaresco in that it grows in soils less nutrient rich, and thus has higher levels of tannins. Barbaresco wines are required to be stored only two years to be so labeled, while Barolo wines require a full three years of storage. This not only reduces the tannins in the final product but also alters the fruit flavor components.