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Great wine
doesn’t have to
be complicated.

Well-crafted, incredibly food-friendly
Monterey County wines.

Chardonnay

2018 Monterey County

A bright, balanced and food-friendly chardonnay from the cool climate of Monterey County. Aged in stainless steel and French oak, aromas of green apple, grapefruit and passion fruit shine through. Both crisp and full-bodied, it’s outstanding with shellfish.

90 points, Wine Enthusiast

Pinot Noir

2019 Monterey County

Blended specifically to ensure harmonious bright fruit aromas and flavors, our pinot noir intrigues with old world elegance. Beautiful light ruby in color, its inviting aromas of orange peel and anise, velvety tannins and spice characters make for an approachable pinot noir.

Red Wine

2018 Monterey County

Our Rhone-based red wine is blended from sustainably grown grenache and syrah grapes. Sourced from foggy benchland vineyards within Monterey County, this captivating blend draws you in for another sip.

Chardonnay

Vineyards

Grapes for the 2018 Complicated Chardonnay were sourced from two vineyards in Monterey County, including the acclaimed Amaral Vineyard. This prime, certified sustainable site was planted in 1997 on benchlands on the west side of the Salinas River Valley, straddling the southern end of the Arroyo Seco sub-AVA. The soils here are comprised of ancient river rock and showcase de-invigorating, hillside-like conditions. This area is often covered in fog coming off the cool, deep waters of the nearby Monterey Bay, elongating the growing season and creating bright, beautiful, balanced Chardonnay.

Growing Season

The 2018 Monterey County growing season started out relatively cool with total rainfall coming in lower than average. A brief heat spike in March helped push bloom along and normal conditions continued through the mid-point of the growing cycle. A heat spike in October pushed the ripening of the fruit, resulting in a harvest that was slightly earlier than the previous year.

Winemaking

After being picked in the cool, early morning hours, the Chardonnay grapes were pressed into stainless steel tanks. The juice underwent a cool fermentation and was inoculated with yeast strains that enhance the crisp, fresh fruit characters from the vineyard while also helping to build a balanced palate.

Tasting Notes

This Monterey County Chardonnay entices with aromas of green apple and grapefruit framed by passionfruit and a hint of limestone. Showing medium acidity and a crisp, full-bodied palate, this Chardonnay has a refreshing, clean finish and is an outstanding choice to be served with shellfish.

Attributes

  • Appelation: Monterey County
  • Composition: 100% Chardonnay
  • Aging: Partial neutral French oak
  • Alcohol: 13.9%
  • T.A.: 0.51 g/100mL
  • pH: 3.54
  • Harvest Date: Sept 21 - Oct 15, 2018
  • Cases: 1,849

Pinot Noir

Vineyards

The majority of the grapes for the 2019 Complicated Pinot Noir were sourced from the acclaimed Herbert Ranch in Monterey County. This certified sustainable vineyard was planted in 1997 and pushes into the coastal Santa Lucia Mountains on the west side of the Salinas River Valley. Located approximately half-way through the Monterey County AVA, about 50 miles south of the northern end of the County, this site is sheltered from the traditionally strong Salinas Valley afternoon winds by a canyon, thus creating warmer temperatures in comparison to surrounding areas.

Growing Season

The 2019 Monterey County growing season started out with a wet winter that in turn provided ample water for vibrant, healthy vines. A mild spring and lengthy grape cluster hang time on the vine ensured wonderful color and flavor creating interesting complexity in the grapes.

Winemaking

After being picked in the cool, early morning hours, the Pinot Noir grapes underwent a cold soak for 24 hours before being fermented with select yeast strains to enhance vineyard character. Each lot gets a tailored pump over schedule selected to enhance oak character and desired extraction levels. Once fermentation was complete, the highest quality lots were blended and aged to ensure the best aromatic and structural components worked in harmony.

Tasting Notes

A beautiful, bright, translucent garnet in color, the 2019 Complicated Pinot Noir intrigues with old world elegance. Aromas of dark cherry and pomegranate show up front. Additional backgrounds of lavender and cinnamon are complemented by hints of tobacco leaf from the oak influence. The palate is balanced and medium in body. A smooth, mellow, medium finish makes this a great, food friendly wine.

Attributes

  • Appelation: Monterey County
  • Composition: 100% Pinot Noir
  • Aging: 15% new French oak
  • Alcohol: 13.9%
  • T.A.: 0.56g/100mL
  • pH: 3.64
  • Harvest Date: Sept 27–Oct 11, 2019
  • Cases: 4,955

Red Wine

Vineyards

The base of this wine is Grenache sourced from a vineyard planted on the valley floor of the Arroyo Seco riverbed. The cool coastal influence of both the Arroyo Seco and Salinas River Valleys results in a longer growing season, which combined with the region’s abundant sunshine, produces fruit with dark, complex flavors. The balance of the wine is Syrah from two certified sustainable vineyard sites planted on benchland west of the Salinas River Valley, where Monterey Bay fog rolls in later in the day and retreats earlier in the morning, allowing for the warmer temperatures needed to ripen Syrah.

Growing Season

The 2018 Monterey County growing season started out relatively cool, with lower than average rainfall. A brief heat spell in March helped bloom along, and normal conditions resumed. Another warm spell in October pushed the ripening of the fruit, resulting in a harvest that was slightly earlier with a larger crop than 2017.

Winemaking

The Grenache was cold soaked for 24 hours before being fermented with a yeast strain selected to preserve the naturally elegant aroma bouquet of the fruit. The wine was pumped over three times a day for six days before being pressed off and undergoing malolactic fermentation. The Syrah also underwent extended skin contact, deepening the color and aromatics, before fermentation with a yeast that enhances the fruit characteristics while adding complexity and spice aromas. The lots were gently pumped over three times a day to accentuate the berry aromas inherent of fruit from these two vineyards. Both varietals were aged in primarily French oak and a small amount of American oak, in a mix of newer and neutral barrels in order to preserve the varietal characteristics while adding a subtle frame. Lots were then chosen for the final blend.

Tasting Notes

Aromas of raspberry, blackberry and violets, framed with subtle nuances of tobacco and cedar box, are followed by flavors of dark cherry, raspberry preserve and chocolate. On the palate, the wine is medium-bodied with a pleasing acidity and clean finish, making it an exceptionally food-friendly wine.

Attributes

  • Appelation: Monterey County
  • Composition: 69% Grenache, 31% Syrah
  • Aging: Primarily French oak with a small amount of American oak
  • Alcohol: 14.1%
  • T.A.: 0.57g/100mL
  • pH: 3.56
  • Harvest Date: Oct 12–Nov 7, 2018
  • Cases: 2,812

The Approach

we like to keep it simple: it’s all about making great wine that we like to drink and share.

A lot of fantastic wine is shrouded in mystery or obscured by the ancient traditions of the old world. Don’t get us wrong - we drink that wine, too. With Complicated wines, we wanted to show you how uncomplicated well-crafted wine can be. It’s a little tongue-in-cheek, but it’s also exactly how we feel about wine: open it, pour it, sip it, enjoy it. Cheers!

The Winemaking

we make bright, balanced and food-friendly wines without over manipulation. we are truly transparent in letting the grapes and monterey county shine.

Monterey County

unbound by long traditions, monterey county is known for its spirit of innovation and for its cool climate and long, coastal growing season

Great wine doesn’t have to be complicated.