Delicious now, a rich Pinot Noir with lush flavors of black cherries, red currants, cola and smoky oak. It’s a big wine with sizable tannins and crisp, coastal acidity, but it’s very dry and silky, and shows great elegance. Should develop bottle complexity over the next six years.— S.H.
Made with Dijon clones from a vineyard in a cool corner of Sebastopol, this rich young Pinot brims with fresh acidity. It has complex flavors of cherries, cola, pomegranates, rhubarb, sandalwood and pepper, wrapped into a silky texture. Just a delight, and should age over the next six years.— S.H.
A great success, showing the airy silkiness of Pinot Noir, and the intensity of Russian River fruit. Waves of raspberries, cherries, red currants, licorice and bacon lead to a long finish of exotic baking spices. Bright with acidity, this does a great job of combining power and elegance. Drink now–2019.— S.H.
This small, Sonoma County-focused producer headed south to make a rich, attention-grabbing wine, with aromas of dark raspberries, blackberries, pulverized cloves, black sage and tobacco leaf. The palate shows smoked beef with cherry syrup, lifted by juniper and pine sap on the midpalate and boisterous acidity. It’s…— M.K.
Here’s one for the cellar. It’s rich and ripe, yet the firm tannins and crisp acidity argue for time. Shows a complex heart of black cherries, red currants, cola, leather and smoky sandalwood that is frankly delicious. But the finish turns hard. Give it until 2011 to begin to show its stuff.— S.H.
A sweet, soft, harmonious Pinot Noir. Feels so gentle in the mouth, it hardly has any weight, yet it’s a very serious wine. The flavors are enormous, suggesting ripe wild cherries, raspberry liqueur and baking spices, finished with perfectly applied, smoky oak, and brightened with fine acidity. A wine of great charm…— S.H.
MacPhail continues its string of super 2007 vineyard-designated Pinots with this compact, fine young release. It’s a bit tight now in acids and tannins, but shows a warm, sweet heart of cherries, raspberries and cola that should emerge with a few years in the cellar. Just beautiful.— S.H.
I have not been impressed by this bottling in past vintages, but the ’05 establishes a new benchmark. Just exactly why is hard to say. Yields were exceptionally low in this long, cool vintage, and lots of new French oak frames dramatically rich, ripe flavors of mashed cherries and raspberries, sprinkled with…— S.H.