This Pinot producer has its own appellation. A delicious, spicy nose with blueberries, spice, violets, lavender and harness leather. Very dense cherry, chocolate, and black-raspberry flavors, with a brambly quality. Needs 2 to 4 years to fully come together.
Chalone continues with its own style, which is not as ripely hedonistic as most other high-end Pinots. But this is the best since 1997. Notable for its balance and harmony, the wine attains great equilibrium of acidity, tannins, oak and cherry fruit. Start drinking this elegant wine in 2008.
Tasted alongside Tantara’s other vineyard Pinots, this is one of the more tannic and acidic. At the same time, the hot vintage yielded immensely ripe fruit, giving the wine jammy, pastry flavors of cherries, red and black raspberries, mocha, cola and root beer. The forwardness will probably limit ageability.
Similar to Loring’s other single-vineyard Pinots in the exceptionally ripe fruit, with flavors veering into blackberry and cherry pastry, deep espresso, cocoa and spice. However there’s considerably more tartness here, with a brisk acidic tingle that accentuates the tannins. Best to cellar this young wine for five years and try again.
A full-bodied, polished wine, a lot like a big Chard with its creamy, leesy texture and peach and pear flavors. But shows its varietal character with a spicy melon note, and has a nice firm backbone of acidity that makes it an ager.
One of the more complex and elegant Chenins in California. Very dry and sleek, with toasted hazelnut and citrus flavors and an enormously rich finish. You don’t usually think of Chenin Blanc as an ager, but this one will.
Despite its rich ripeness, this wine is a bit lighter in alcohol and tighter than Loring’s other releases. The tannins and acids suggest midterm cellaring, but if you drink it now, you’ll like the richness of the black cherry compote, mocha, Oriental spice and toast flavors.