Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Hillcrest Terrace

Joe Miller is a former professor of astronomy at UC Santa Cruz, and a long time amateur winemaker. Having retired from the University he decided to start a small commercial winery among the growing band of vintners around Swift and Ingalls in Santa Cruz.

The fruit is all purchased, with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Merlot coming from Bargetto's Regan Vineyard. No new oak is used; everything is at least 1 year old. Current production is around 800 cases, with plans to slowly expand to around 2000 cases.

2007 Sauvignon Blanc, Arroyo Seco
Lovely citrus, grassy nose. Lots of acidity; flavours of lemon, pear and green apple. Crisp finish 88 $15

2008 Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains
All Clone 4, from the Regan Vineyard. Unfined and unfiltered.
Creamy lemon nose. Lightly oaked, red apple and a little vanilla, good finish. 88 $18

2008 Pinot Noir, Regan Vineyard
Fermented in stainless steel with an 'oak chain' added.
Bright garnet colour. Nice cherry/raspberry nose, lots of cherry fruit, light acidity. Initially showed some pithy bitterness on the finish and was too cold; gained weight after it had warmed up. 88

2007 Pinot Noir, Santa Lucia Highlands
From Talbott's Sunny Slope Vineyard.
Darker colour than the Regan, nose was earthy with black cherry. Richer and more full bodied; lots of black cherry and currant fruit with some coffee on the finish. 89