2009 Loring Wine Co. Pinot Noir 'Russian River Valley' (Gary Friedman / Los Angeles…)
Brian Loring has a self-proclaimed obsession with Pinot Noir. From a workaday facility in Lompoc on the Central Coast, he makes half a dozen single-vineyard Pinot Noirs. This one, though, is a mixture of several vineyard lots and is a great argument for the virtues of blending.
The 2009 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir has everything going for it — beautiful fruit, an enticing aroma, good structure and layered flavors. It also has something indefinable: character.
Only 600 cases were made, so pick up some while it's still around. Drink it with roast leg of lamb or some simple grilled chops.
Region: Russian River Valley
Price: About $30
Style: Rich and balanced
What it goes with: Roasted or grilled lamb
Where to find it: Mission Wines in South Pasadena (626) 403-9463, http://www.missionwines.com; Twenty Twenty Wine Merchants in West Los Angeles (310) 447-2020, http://www.2020wines.com; Vendome Liquors in Fullerton (714) 524-0800, http://www.vendomes.com; Vintage Wines Limited in San Diego (858) 549-2112, vintagewinessd.com; and Wade's Wines in Westlake Village (818) 522-4445, http://www.wadeswines.com