Barham Mendelsohn (Au Bon Climat) Pinot Noir 2015

Synopsis, Our Opinion: Unusual California Pinot Noir.

Producer/Winery: Jim Clendenen; Santa Maria, California.

Grape Variety: Pinot Noir.

Geographic Appellation, Region, Country: Russian River Valley; Sonoma County, California.

Vintage: 2015

Price: $36.00 (with a Au Bon Climat club discount)

Purchased From: Au Bon Climat tasting room; Santa Barbara, California.

Paired With: Swedish meatballs in a sour cream & wine sauce, mashed potatoes and beets.


    Opened 2-hours before drinking. Clear, dark ruby color with a scant of purple tint and a lighter rim. Powerful damp earth, cherry and sweet spice aromas. Smooth entry, slightly viscous mouthfeel, medium body and a 80-grit texture. Fruity flavors of cherry, juicy pomegranate and tart cranberry with a prominent cinnamon taste in the background. Fresh, but only medium acidity, slightly raspy tannins that dominated from mid-palate to the very end. Quite a short tannic finish that leaves a slightly bitter aftertaste. A very different Pinot Noir that was more like a California Cabernet Sauvignon with its big bold flavors and powerful tannins. Each pour changed quite dramatically and by the last pour it became more mellow and the fruit flavors changed from soft and interspersed to pronounced. We both liked its unusual character and bold flavors, but at the $36 price point it went from whimsical and fun to simply unusual California Pinot Noir.

Jim Clendenen
Photo from Au Bon Climat.
Comments: Learn more about Jim Clendenen and his Au Bon Climat wines.

See our reviews of other Jim Clendenen Au Bon Climat wines.

Alcohol Content: 13.5%

Closure: Aluminum covered Uncovered 50mm natural cork.

UPC Code: 8 50755 00022 8

Imported by: Not applicable.