Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Quail Creek Pinot Noir: 2011 California

Quail Creek Pinot Noir
Today, I am trying the 2011 California Pinot Noir from Quail Creek. I picked up this wine from Whole Foods for $4.99.

The Quail Creek Pinot Noir is a dry wine with some strong overtones of spice. I also pick up hints of Anise in the fragrance. I would expect this wine to pair well with a steak and onions type dish, or a blackened fish... something hearty, and spicy because this wine is hearty and spicy.

Quail Creek is produced by the Bronco Wine company and run by Fred Franzi (nephew of wine legend Ernest Gallo) and his brother Joseph, and cousin John. They are based in Ceres California and are the fourth largest Wine producer in the United States with over 35,000 acres of vineyards.

I often forget that just because Whole Foods sources it's merchandise locally, doesn't mean that mega companies aren't local...

In addition to Quail Creek, Bronco Wine Company also maintains 60 different brands of wine.

I was going to skip over this, but since I am finishing the bottle, and a little buzzed, I will dive right in...
I understand that cheap wine will usually come from a large company that is able to lower costs with high volume. I also understand the need to keep labor costs down to keep the price down. However, Bronco Wine Company has been accused of some appalling practices. Including : "conspiracy to defraud by misrepresenting cheaper grapes as premium..." and labor violations described by the United Farm Workers Union as "egregious violation of Cal-OSHA safety regulations".

I truly feel that it is the responsibility of the people of this country to put our money where our mouths are and force companies to stop the heinous practices by refusing to buy their products until they change their ways. But alas, the old adage is true: You get what you pay for. If you truly want to buy products from good people who treat their employees well, and their customers with respect, you have to buy from a small business, and pay a premium price...

I was expecting to much to think that Whole Foods (who prides itself on carrying locally produced, sustainable merchandise) would only carry products from humane manufacturers. Hell, we all need cheap wine, and there are plenty of illegal immigrants
 to exploit to get it right?