by Andrew Chalk
The Old Soul line from Oak Ridge Vineyards offers a Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, and this Pinot Noir, all at $13. Clearly aimed at the value end of the market the endeavor is enabled by using Lodi fruit, which sells as little as a tenth of the price of fruit from Napa and Sonoma. The challenge is that Lodi is not known as a propitious area for Pinot Noir, being warm and continental rather than cool and maritime.
The severe price constraint and the sourcing from an area not known for the grape establishes different kinds of winemaking challenges. Old Soul has done well under the circumstances, producing a wine that is varietally correct and enjoyable to drink. I would speculate about the color density but it is not distracting.
This wine is likely better with food than served alone. I would choose pork chops and even barbecued pork (ribs or pulled)
Appearance: Deep, virtually opaque, ruby;
Nose: Very ripe raspberry fruit. Hints of oak and black pepper,
Palate: Raspberries, smoky licorice flavors fill the mouth. Velvety tannins with a lasting finish;