2013 Gouges Bourgogne, $29.00

Admittedly, when I'm in the mood for Pinot Noir, I immediately gravitate toward Burgundy, not California, not even our closest neighbor to the west, worthy as they may be. Why? It’s not just that I've spent more time in Burgundy than other Pinot Noir growing regions. The real reason is that, with generally lower alcohol levels and higher acidity, Pinots from Burgundy are a better compliment to food, which is what I’m after. How did the Gouges Bourgogne do in that role? Splendidly! With its lighter color, medium bodied weight, and energy from the subtle but perky acidity, it in no way overwhelmed or detracted from the food pairing (a simple pork roast and veggies). On the contrary, notes of tart cherry, red raspberry and pomegranate, and the lively, mouthwatering palate impression definitely enhanced the overall enjoyment of the meal. This is a forward, accessible, pretty Pinot Noir that is at its best with food. For those looking for a high octane fruit bomb cocktail, please look elsewhere.