Meiomi Pinot Noir

Review by Eric Tansey, CSW,Sommelier                                                                                                                           

The Meiomi Pinot Noir is deep red in color with a bright pink hue. The wine is translucent but is a dark, blood red color which is a classic sign of new world style Pinot Noir. The nose gives it all away as to where this wine hails from. Vanilla, rose perfume, ripe black cherry, cocoa and dusty terroir. These aromas should always bring you back to Cali Cali Cali!

On the palate the wine is very fruit forward with black cherry jam followed by vanilla and subtle black pepper on the finish. But the fruit is definitely in control here, from beginning to end. The wine comes across as very smooth and lush with little noticeable acidity or alcohol content.

This is a great wine to pair with an old world style of Pinot Noir in the same price range, for an interesting and tasty comparison. You will easily see why it is so popular here in the USA.

Tansey’s Blind Rating – 88 Points 

#20 of the 2015 Top 100 wines – Wine Spectator 2015

The Break Down

Dryness Level

Wine Selection – Meiomi

Producer/Wine makers – Joseph Wagner 

Vintage – 2014

Varietal – Pinot Noir

Style – Fruit driven, soft, medium bodied red wine

Region – 48% Monterey, 27% Sonoma, %Santa Barbara California, USA

Oak – French and American oak

Alcohol – 14.5%

Food Paring – Stuffed flounder, chicken, turkey, pork, mild hard cheeses

Don’t Talk Politics at the Table

by Eric Tansey, CSW, Somm1

This istansey-reviews-about-gallery-1 why I love to do this blind. The Meiomi is a big topic of conversation in the wine world right now. It is kinda like bringing up politics at the dinner table. There are so many opinions as to why people love or hate this wine but at the end of the day it’s the name and label that leads to these opinions.

If you drop the name, and the label, and you leave your biases about “sell outs” behind…the wine is what it is. This wine is delicious. It has a touch of sweet but it is not a sugary sweet, its just a very ripe cherry sort of sweet.

The Meiomi Pinot Noir is a BIG take on a rather small and petite style of wine, making it an instant go-to in today’s market. Fruit bombs and oak monsters are at their peak right now, similar to IPAs in the beer world. What sets this wine out from the pack (i.e. Ménage à Trois, Apothic Red, Apothic Crush)  is that this wine is a Pinot Noir. The problem is that it is not the “typical pinot noir” the world is used to, making it hard for older generation wine drinkers to know what to expect when they come across a wine like this.

Old world wines place more of an emphasis on the farming than on the actual wine making. This typically leads to wines that are earthier and more acidic in style. New World wines tend to be all about what happens after the farming, i.e. the use of oak barrels and blending techniques. The best way to understand this is that the winemaker is the star here and not the farmer. If you can wrap your head around that then you can appreciate the wine in the glass.

So what do I think?

My blind rating is my only opinion and 88 is not a bad score at all. I would have made it 90 had the acidity been just a tad higher but really the wine is quite tasty and I already know that it is a crowd pleaser. If it wasn’t it would not have gone to Constellation Wine Brands and it would not have jumped to an over 700,000-case production. So as I say, trust your palate. If you have read all of this while at the store and the bottle is in your hand… THEN BUY IT ! It is a great wine and if anyone around you scuffs at you, tell them to go suck a grape and get over it. Cheers!


My favorite part of the story, in the winery’s own words 

Meiomi was founded in 2007 by Joe Wagner, with this goal: “Blending Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from three coastal appellations for vintage consistency, coastal integrity, and abundant flavors.” The name Meiomi, which means “coast” in the language of the coastal-dwelling Wappo and Yuki tribes, pays tributes to its origins.