In 1982 Sir Peter Michael established the Peter Michael winery on a square mile of rocky volcanic ridges that form the western face of Mount St. Helena in Sonoma County. From the beginning, the wine growing philosophy was modeled on the French tradition infused with a few modern influences:
One, the vineyard terroir would be the single most important feature. Two, the wines would be elegant rather than overstated. Three, there would be a hundred-year commitment to the development of a great estate.
Only premium hillside vineyard fruit is selected for Peter Michael wines. Vineyards from the estate located on the slopes of Mount St. Helena in Eastern Sonoma County, the Alexander Mountain Estate above Alexander Valley, and the Pisoni Vineyard in the Santa Lucia Highlands provide the foundation for the intense flavors and aromas in the wines. Each wine is a single-vineyard bottling representing the unique characteristics of its site.
"This outstanding winery is run by Sir Peter Michael, and the wines are fashioned by brilliant Burgundian winemaker Luc Morlet. The belief in cool climate mountain vineyards as well as artisinal, non-interventionalistic winemaking has resulted in California's finest array of Chardonnays, a lustrous Bordeaux-styled red, and a terrific Sauvignon Blanc. Moreover, this estate is not done yet as evidenced by their newest superstar, the Pinot Noir." - Robert Parker
Peter Michael Les Pavots Proprietary Red 1997
Rated 96 - The wine was aged in French oak (50% new), and bottled without filtration. Fortunately, there are 4,351 cases of 750 ml bottles, as well as 330 cases of magnums. A blue/black/purple color is followed by an extraordinary bouquet of toast, blackberries, creme de cassis, licorice, and cedar. Full-bodied, with silky tannin, low acidity, and layers of concentrated, pure black fruits judiciously wrapped in subtle toasty oak, this wine can be drunk early, but promises to hit its peak in 5-7 years, and last for two or more decades. - Robert Parker
Peter Michael Les Pavots 2006
Rated 96. The 2006 Les Pavots (a 2,730-case blend of 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Cabernet Franc, and the rest Merlot and Petit Verdot) exhibits big notes of chocolate fudge intermixed with dark berry fruit, forest floor, underbrush, and some smoky oak. The wine is full-bodied, with remarkable intensity, low acidity, and a fleshy, opulent mouthfeel. This wine should drink well for 15-20+ years. - Robert Parker
Peter Michael Chardonnay La Carriere 2007
Rated 95 - One of my favorite cuvees is always La Carriere. The 2007 La Carriere shows all the same characteristics, but with more honeysuckle and a subtle hint of hazelnuts in its fill-bodied, zesty, vivid, vibrant style, a characteristic of this vintage. It should drink nicely for 5-7 years. - Parker