2020 Paula Kornell Blanc De Noirs, Napa Valley
Paula Kornell continues the legacy of her family’s California sparkling wine heritage. In 1958, Hanns Kornell married Marilouise Rossini and together they purchased the Larkmead Estate, establishing Hanns Kornell Champagne Cellars in Napa Valley. The Kornell’s became pioneers of “Méthode Champenoise” styled wines in California. Today, Paula Kornell crafts sparkling wines for her namesake brand, Paula Kornell Sparkling Wines. This stylish 2020 vintage dated Blanc De Noirs is 70% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay.
This wine reveals a medium-straw color with aromas of crusted bread and currants. The body fleshes out on the palate with a wealth of pomegranite, creme de cassis, macerated raspberries and delicate lemon meringue undertones along with just a hint of liquid minerals. The freshness and acidity are there, but it is not distracting as it finishes in a gentle, caressing way. This is a fruit-driven Blanc de Noir sparkling wine that immediately draws you in with plenty of personality, but without being too serious. It has a casual appeal that you can easily savor on any occasion and with most foods.
By W Peter Hoyne