Lane Tanner Winery

Newsletter 2007

Happy Valentines Day!

I thought it was about time for my yearly newsletter and besides, I would rather write this than do “real work”. Soo…on to something new and exciting! This is my first ever Pinot Czarina Wine Club Newsletter. What does that really mean? To those of you (relatives and close friends) it means nothing since I can’t get you to actually buy my wine. But those of you that have purchased my wines in the past are now automatic members, entitled to a 15% discount on all of my new wines, once a year, through the club newsletter. But wait, there’s more…you get first crack at any library wines I want to sell too. Yes, unbelievable, isn’t it. A wine club that let’s you just buy what you want.

What’s with the Pinot Czarina thing, you may be asking….As many of you know, Andre Tchelistcheff was the man responsible for getting me into this biz and my mentor for many years. (If you don’t know who he is , please Google him...godfather of the CA wine industry but so much more). He grew up as part of the Russian Aristocracy before the big revolution. He had a sister, that I was fortunate enough to meet in the early 1990’s who was, at one time an actual Czarina (think Dr. Zhivago..accept when we met, she was around 90, 4’7”, 130 and was smoking like Marge Simpson’s sister). I was still captivated. I don’t think there is a living Czarina left now so I have scooped the title..besides when you say it out loud, Pinot Czarina sounds really good.


Enough about me and my ego and on to the wine. This year, I have four wines that are show stoppers! They are so tasty that I call them the Yum-Yum lineup. Every harvest produces a different taste even though I get the exact same grapes and use the exact same recipe. Last year was a great wine to cellar cause of that strong acid backbone. This years wines are the most tasty wines I have made since 1986...yes, that’s right, not 06 or 96 but 86. One problem, they evaporate in your glass. One minute I have a full glass and I turn around to flip the steak and the darn wine is gone next time I look. Teleportation? Alcoholic? Alzheimer’s? Who knows…Let’s meet our new contestants

2004 French Camp Syrah** I have tried to make a Syrah that tastes like Pinot for 10 years and this time I did it. If you like those big Santa Rita Hills PN’s, you will flip for this baby (at a fraction of the price). Confuse your friends and stun your in-laws. It’s elegant with fruit explosions. It has spice and chocolate with cherries and berries and delightful goodness throughout.

2005 Santa Barbara Co. Pinot Noir** This blend of White Hills PN, Bien Nacido PN and a drop of French Camp Syrah is the wine for every occasion. It has all the crunchy red fruit you will ever hope for with a broad midpalat, hints of violets and a berry-etched finish. Goes with everything and everyone. 

2005 Bien Nacido Vineyard Pinot Noir** These vines are 30 years old now and tasting marvelous. True terroir and complexity are the buzz words. Chalk full of tarragon, earthy tones, deep strawberry and black pepper with hints of cola and plum. The finish lingers longer than this newsletter.

2005 Julias Vineyard Pinot Noir** My “haunting other woman” is all she should be. She starts off quiet and rather restrained..then she opens up.. Swirls of red raspberries and smoke, Asian spice and wet stones, hints of cola and wild black cherries with a finish so integrated and expansive that it’s creamy, fruity and savory all at once.

Love, your pal...