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🍇 An ode to the lands and the hands that produce them- El Pino Club, The Cusp Pinot Noir 2019

This week, for #Fidelspicks, we have The Cusp 2019 from El Pino Club


Estate History

Using grapes from around the world, the producers have created a pinot noir that showcases the best of this varietal, allowing the grapes to become "an ode to the lands and the hands that produce them."

Vineyard Notes

Fruit for The Cusp comes exclusively from Trenton Vineyard in the Russian River Valley, comprised of rolling hillsides and numerous soil profiles such as Goldridge fine sandy loam and Laniger loam. Fog layers keep the valley cool to complement the warm days.


The Trenton Road Vineyard is located in the Russian River Valley AVA of Sonoma County and is ideally situated to benefit from the morning fog and afternoon sunshine. From the vineyard's 45 acres, we selected fruit from just four blocks (Old Barn, Richard's Crown, Richard's South, and Kashia) hand-picked between September 11-28, 2019.

Winemaker Notes

Winemaker Alicia Sylvester had a specific goal in mind when making The Cusp wanting to make a "richer, very distinguished expression of Pinot Noir." And that she did. Using longer hang times and aged in 20% new French oak, Sylvester used the distinctively dark Mt Eden clone as a base, whereas other producers used it as a blender. The result is a full, round-bodied pinot noir with intense dark fruit but magnificently balanced and surprisingly intricate.

Tasting Notes

The Cusp fully embraces the tension between Russian River fog and Sonoma sunshine. A proudly new-world Pinot, with a full, round body, packed with concentrated dark fruit, but beautifully balanced and unexpectedly complex.


Aromas of concentrated bing cherry pie filling and bright cranberry are interwoven with soft vanilla, baking spices, spun sugar, and a hint of gently worn leather. Bright bing cherry flavors on the front palate are balanced by a weightier yet elegant. Bold, rich, big shoulders, red cherry fruit with some darker fruit notes, earthy, jammy, morels

Vintage Notes

The 2019 harvest started 1-2 weeks later than usual. A wet winter and spring followed by persistent cool temperatures extended the growing season, allowing the grapes to mature gradually, resulting in wines with good fruit concentration, strong acidity, and depth.

Food Pairing

Pair it with lightly-seasoned lamb stews.