In a nutshell: A rich, full and expressive Pinot Gris from the Russian River Valley region of Sonoma County, northern California.
The lowdown: The cool, foggy climate and loamy soils of the Russian River Valley vineyards are ideal for cool climate varieties such as Pinot Gris. The grapes for this are hand picked and fermented and aged in stainless steel with about a quarter being aged on its lees to develop a smooth and round mouthfeel. The result is a quite complex wine which is full-bodied with intense flavours of pear, baked apple, peach and honey with dried fig and ginger notes.A big, well balanced Californian Pinot Gris that could arguably rival an Alsace Grand Cru
When to drink: While good drinking on its own the fullness and depth pairs well with rich pork dishes as well as richer creamy pasta.
In 1941 actor Fred MacMurray bought the MacMurray ranch situated near Healdsburg in California's Sonoma Valley. Here he embraced the rancher's lifestyle, raising prize-winning cattle and farming crops, while his children rode horses through the hills.
It wasn't until 1996 that it transformed into a world-class vineyard and the MacMurray Ranch quickly became one of Russian Rivers most acclaimed Pinot Noir vineyards. Today, the estate has expanded and encompasses vineyards throughout the Russian River Valley and the Central Coast. Fred's daughter, Kate, herself an actor and screenwriter remains very much involved with the estate along with winemaker Boyd Morrison. While Pinot Noir has been the grape variety with which they've made their name they also make acclaimed white wines from Chardonnay and Pinot Gris.