The name "Fat Monk" makes one question the sanity (or at least the wisdom) of the owners, but there's a story. There's always a story!
Fat Monk is a label used by Villa San-Juliette Winery in Paso Robles. The winery is the creation of Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick, two Brits from Liverpool who made bags of money producing reality TV shows in the U.S. and Great Britain. Nigel worked on such television classics as American Gladiators, Pop Idol, and So You Think You Can Dance. Ken was involved with American Idol and America's Got Talent.
To help atone for those sins, Nigel and Ken make terrific Pinot Noir. They purchased a beautiful 168-acre Paso vineyard and built a 14,000-square-foot Tuscan-style villa. Imagine the stares they got from the jeans-clad locals when they arrived dressed in designer clothing and driving a Bentley! They have since convinced their neighbors that they are serious about viticulture.
In addition to estate-grown wines under the Villa San-Juliette label, they produce a few wines from purchased grapes under the Fat Monk label. The name? Legend has it that the old mission which still stands down the street sent out an old, fat monk to find land to plant vineyards. The land he chose is the land that Villa San-Juliette is on!
This 100% Pinot spent nine months in new and neutral French oak. It has a rich mouth feel with flavors of cherry, strawberry, and plum. It is very good for the price! Did we mention that it would be perfect with your Thanksgiving dinner? Matt Ortman, who with his father created Ortman Family Vineyards (which we carry), is the winemaker. Try serving it with duck.