With the holiday season in full swing, the Fresno State Winery announces its winter wine releases including the public debut of the 2012 Pinot Noir from Saviez Vineyards (Fresno County).

Other student-crafted wines released this month include the 2010 Merlot, 2010 Zinfandel, 2011 Sangiovese and 2012 Barbera, all from Duarte Vineyards (San Joaquin County).

Limited editions of the Nouveau wines released in November are available, as well as the wine club feature, 2008 Solare.

All are available at the Rue and Gwen Gibson Farm Market on campus (5370 N. Chestnut Ave., north of Shaw) and online. The Fresno State Winery is offering free shipping on all online orders of six bottles or more ordered through the winery web site this holiday season.

Kevin Smith, winery marketing manager and enology professor, said the new Pinot Noir, priced at $12.95, is a limited production wine first introduced exclusively to the Unleashed Wine Club in October. It’s now available to the public through the Gibson Farm Market and online. Only 15 cases remain.

“This red wine presents characters of cranberry, cherry and spice,” Smith said. “Pair it with chicken or fish.”

He said the other four new releases are small-batch, student-made wines that have a reputation for medium body, great balance, complex fruits and team spirit. All four are priced at $12.95 each.

The Solare wine club selection is a late harvest Viognier from Duarte Vineyards that presents notes of caramel, vanilla and roasted plum, Smith said.

“The Solare falls into the sweet, dessert wine category, which always makes for a great holiday gift item,” he added. It is priced at $19.95.

Made from this years’ fruit in the Fresno State Vineyards (Fresno County), the 2013 Nouveau Blanc and Nouveau Rouge are two light wines that pair well with many foods. These were both limited production student wines with only 29 cases of the Blanc and 22 cases of the Rouge bottled. They are $6.95 each.

The Fresno State Winery, the first commercially bonded university winery in the country in 1997, is a full functioning enterprise where students in the university’s Viticulture and Enology program get hands-on experience producing small batch, hand-crafted wines that have become available on the open market.  Many of the student-crafted wines have won more than 250 awards in commercial wine competitions.

Fresno State Enology students often go on to become head winemakers at many of the premier wineries in the state and beyond, Smith said.

For more information, call 559.278.6070 or visit Fresno State Winery.

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