Pinot Noir tagged posts

A High-End Pinot for $24 – Calera Central Coast (WA92, $23.95)

October 12, 2016 90+ Bargains  No comments

Calera Central Coast LabelWith the domestic Pinot Noir boom in full force, it's increasingly difficult to find value in this hot category.  As with other hot categories, I look to the top producers' lesser wines.  Calera makes Pinot Noir (and Chardonnay) from exclusive vineyards on Mt. Harlan and the $50+ price points reflect that exclusivity.  But each year they combine grapes from some of the Central Coast's best vineyards and make a Central Coast bottling.  The "Central Coast" label may be generic, but the vineyards are anything but.  Many of the vineyards are used for the flagship wine for other wineries.  Names like Bien Nacido and Solomon Hills are featured on the label which details the percentage that each vineyard makes up.

The look of this wine is decidedly Burgundian with a transparent ruby, but on

Read More

A Favorite Pinot Value – 2013 Talbott Kali Hart ($14.95)

January 15, 2016 Uncategorized  No comments

Talbott Kali Hart 2013 Pinot Noir LabelDuring a recent trip to the Monterey peninsula, I made it a point to stop by Talbott's Carmel Valley tasting room.  I've always admired their wines, especially their Kali Hart bottling which represents one of the very finest values in both Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

We tasted through all of Talbott's bottlings, and though their higher-end pinot and chardonnay is excellent, the clear value is the Kali Hart.  This wine is 100% estate fruit from Talbott's highly regarded Sleepy Hollow Vineyard.  It's up-front and juicy yet has the depth to age for several years.

Talbott was recently sold to Gallo winery.  Hopefully they allow Talbott to continue the roll they've been on for the last decade.
Buy Here: 2013 Talbott Kali Hart Pinot Noir $14.95

Read More

A 1er Cru Red Burgundy Under $50

January 11, 2016 High End Values  No comments

jadot_beaune_1er_cru_LRGLet's get this out of the way early.  Burgundy is overpriced.  Forget Napa, Bordeaux or any other of the top winemaking regions.  Burgundy is where the world's most expensive wine is made.  To make matters worse, the region's marginal climate makes for some bad vintages and bad wines.

Ferarri's are overpriced too.  They are fussy and hard to keep running, but much like the wines of Burgundy, when they are performing, they are brilliant.

That brings us to the wine at hand.  Louis Jadot's 2012 Beaune 150th Anniversary 1er Cru.  Unlike the "reserve" moniker here in the U.S., "Premier (1er) Cru" actually means something in France.  It's a designation given to only the best vineyards in the best regions.  Jadot only makes this wine in the best vintages and if the 92-94 point score from

Read More

Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards: A winemaker’s perspective

July 6, 2010 Cellar WorthyHigh End Values  One comment

Our trip to Napa started with a drive along a winding road to the secluded Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards.  Upon arrival at the old house and small warehouse building, an unassuming man in a golf cart pulled up.  I told him we were there for a tour and he suggested I check in at the winery office.  The office is a small room on the back side of the fermenting facility and there we were greeted by Ronene Anderson.  She gave us the option to taste with the winemaker which we were happy to accept.  Tours at Anderson's are usually given by one of the Andersons or by the winemaker, so visitors are likely to have a special experience.

That unassuming man who directed us to the winery office turned out to be Mac Sawyer who, along with vineyard owner Todd Anderson, makes the wine at

Read More

Etude Pinot Noir 2007- Textbook Carneros Pinot under $30

June 20, 2010 High End Values  No comments

The Napa Valley and Sonoma Coast are amazing places.  Napa specifically is a fraction the size of the Bordeaux region, yet grows basically all of the grape varietals of the entire country of France.  The reason?  The Pacific Ocean and Mayacamas Mountains combine to create unique microclimates all over the valley, each uniquely suited to the many varietals that thrive there.

Etude's Estate Pinot Noir is grown in the Carneros AVA that covers part of Napa and Sonoma counties.  Breezes from San Pablo Bay keep Carneros cooler than the rest of Napa Valley making it perfectly suited to growing Pinot Noir grapes.  Etude focuses on making great Pinot Noir in this region and the 2007 has certainly delivered.  It's exceptionally fragrant, earthy and complex, with a full bodied texture that I find

Read More