Red, Pinot Noir, WINE

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Pinot Noir is widely considered to produce some of the finest wines in the world, but is a difficult varietal to cultivate and vinify. The grape's tendency to produce tightly packed clusters makes it susceptible to several viticultural hazards, and the thin-skins and low levels of phenolic compounds result in mostly lightly colored, medium-bodied, low-tannin wines. The tremendously broad range of bouquets, flavors, textures and impressions that Pinot noir can produce lends to its overall popularity but also to its misunderstanding. In the broadest terms, the wine tends to display aromas reminiscent of black and/or red cherry, raspberry and to a lesser extent currant and many other fine small red and black berry fruits. Traditional Pinot Noir is famous for its savory fleshiness and 'farmyard' aromas, but changing fashions, modern winemaking techniques, and new easier-to-grow clones have favored a lighter, more fruit-prominent, cleaner style.

Like many other red varietals, the character of the wine depends heavily on where the grapes are grown and how they are vinified, and these distinctions are largely reflected in a New World/Old World dichotomy. The Burgundy region in France, Pinot Noir's place of origin, is renowned for producing the most complex, ageworthy, and esoteric versions. These can range from dark, brooding, densely tannic wines to light, ethereally elegant wines of intensely perfumed character. Fruit profiles often differ as well, but the common denominator in all Burgundy Pinot Noir is the essence of the place in which it grows, coined as the term terroir. The finest examples, after years of proper aging, display haunting aromas and flavors that defy description using refrences of common reference points. The grape has also found highly unique expression in the vineyards of Germany, where it's known as Spätburgund. From the steep slopes of the Ahr Valley to the rolling, pastorl hills of the Pfalz, the country is producing wines with notably vibrant fruit and deep savory character, but also a rugged edge in which the stamp of terroir is also evident.

New World styles of Pinot Noir also vary in their specifics, but in general they are built on a bright, expressive fruit profile. California has several regions that excel with the varietal, most famously the Sonoma Coast AVA and its sub-AVA Russian River Valley. The wines typically display exuberant red cherry and strawberry notes along with the occasional savory spice elements. While these are cool climates by New World standards, Pinot Noir still achieves more consistent ripeness and more viscosity and body as a result. The AVAs of Santa Barbara County also produce outstanding versions with more concentrated savory profile, while Mendocino County's wines tend toward the dark-fruited, earthy profile. Oregon's Willamette Valley is perhaps the most old school of the New WOrld profiles, where fruit is less pronounced and an herbacious forest floor component imparts a touch of terroir on the wines. Perhaps the most exciting New World Pinot Noir wines are now coming from New Zealand, where the Central Otago and Martinborough regions are producing wines of dark fruit character with essentially cool-climate structure and texture, an intriguing, if non-traditional, combination.

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92-94 points Neal Martin (Wine Advocate): The 2015 Savigny-lès-Beaune 1er Cru Les Lavières has a pastille-like quality to the nose: strawberry, red plums with just a hint of cassis in the background. The palate is medium-bodied with a sensual opening that almost catches you off-guard. The tannins… ...

WA 92-94
AM 92
FWR 89-92
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Pavelot Savigny-les-Beaune 1er cru Lavieres 2015  (#332201)

Pinot Noir from Savigny-lès-Beaune, Côtes de Beaune, Burgundy, France

750ml Bottle | In stock, 3 available
WA 92-94
AM 92
FWR 89-92
NEW ITEM

95+ points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): The 2015 Pinot Noir Cahill Lane Vineyard is a bit more closed than the other wines in this range, but it also offers greater subtlety finesse and nuance. I expect the 2015 will need at least a few years to be at its best, but all the elements are in place for… ...

AG 95
WA 93
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Walter Hansel Pinot Noir Russian River Valley Cahill Lane 2015  (#332921)

Pinot Noir from Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California

750ml Bottle | In stock, 8 available
NEW ITEM

98 points James Suckling: Dark fruit with blackberry and blueberry aromas as well as needles and basil. Full-bodied, dense and layered with mushroom, moss and bark. A dark berry character, too. A unique expression of pinot noir from old vines in Patagonia. Needs three to five years to soften but a… ...

JS 98
WA 96
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Chacra Pinot Noir Patagonia Treinta y Dos 2016  (#701990)

Pinot Noir from Patagonia, Argentina

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available

94 points Jeb Dunnuck: Coming mostly from the Pisoni Vineyard, with the balance Garys and Soberanes, the 2015 Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir offers terrific depth and concentration, with loads of black cherry, black raspberry, spring flower and forest floor aromas and flavors. Brought up in 50%… ...

JD 94
WS 92
V 92
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Lucia (Pisoni) Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands 2015  (#332689)

Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands, Central Coast, California

375ml Half Bottle | In stock, 12 available

91 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): The 2014 Vosne-Romanée AC... is another very strong villages this year, with excellent purity and nascent complexity. The bouquet wafts from the glass in a blend of raspberries, cherries, cocoa, a fine base of minerality, woodsmoke and new oak. On the… ...

JG 91
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Felettig Vosne-Romanee 2014  (#332115)

Pinot Noir from Vosne-Romanée, Côte de Nuits, Burgundy, France

750ml Bottle | In stock, 8 available

92 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): Les Lavrottes... lies just below the southern end of Bonnes-Mares, sandwiched between les Baudes and Gruenchers on the slope... The 2014... offers up a fine bouquet of red plums, cherries, cocoa, violets, a nice base of soil tones and a fine framing of… ...

JG 92
AM 91
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Felettig Chambolle-Musigny 1er cru Lavrottes 2014  (#332097)

Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Côte de Nuits, Burgundy, France

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available

92-94 points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): ...One of the highlights in this range, the 2012 boasts stunning power, depth and harmony. The lifted aromatics recall the Ursules, but here the fruit possesses more volume and creaminess. An explosive, layered finish rounds things out in style. Some of the… ...

AG 92-94
AM 92
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Jadot Beaune 1er cru 153rd Anniversary 2012  (#332138)

Pinot Noir from Beaune, Côtes de Beaune, Burgundy, France

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available

94 points Wine Enthusiast: Light raspberry-sorbet notes meet with fresh fennel fronds, pepper and cinnamon on the nose of this bottling from Chad Melville and family. It's tight and tart on the palate, with dried cranberry, pine needle and eucalyptus flavors that juxtapose with the more fruit-driven… ...

WE 94
IWR 93
AG 91
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Melville Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills Estate 2014  (#329489)

Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Central Coast, California

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
WE 94
IWR 93
AG 91
NEW ITEM
$26.95
$36.00
Save $9.05 (25%)36.00
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95 points and 'Editors' Choice,' Wine Enthusiast: These are in fact the original Pinot Noir vines planted in the Willamette Valley, back in the mid-1960s. An explosion of sensory detail quickly opens up the wine, with pollen, sandalwood, sassafras and coffee grounds. Those flavors wrap around… ...

WE 95
V 94
JS 92
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Eyrie Pinot Noir Dundee Hills Original Vines 2014  (#331836)

Pinot Noir from Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon

750ml Bottle | In stock, 3 available

93 points and 'Outstanding,' Allen Meadows (Burghound): A reserved, even reticent but beautifully elegant nose reluctantly offers glimpses of plum, black cherry, violet and stone. The stony character continues onto the bold, taut and mineral driven medium-bodied flavors that possess focused power… ...

AM 93
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Billard-Gonnet Pommard 1er cru Rugiens Bas 2012  (#332014)

Pinot Noir from Pommard, Côtes de Beaune, Burgundy, France

750ml Bottle | In stock, 7 available

93 points Wine & Spirits: Werner Näkel, whose work with pinot noir brought Germany s Ahr region to prominence, is now joined in the winery by his daughters, Dörte and Meike. Their basic Spätburgunder in 2015 excels in its grace and energy: The flavors come across as breezy--tart, tangy fruit scented… ...

W&S 93
WE 92
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Meyer-Nakel Spatburgunder Ahr 2015  (#327672)

Pinot Noir from Ahr, Germany

750ml Bottle | In stock, 5 available
$29.95
$39.00
Save $9.05 (23%)39.00
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91 points and 'Outstanding,' Allen Meadows (Burghound): (40% whole cluster). This is charmingly airy and expressive with admirably pure aromas of red currant, plum and dried floral elements. There is a bit more volume and mid-palate concentration to the medium-bodied flavors that also possess a… ...

AM 91
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Amiot-Servelle Chambolle-Musigny 1er cru Les Plantes 2011  (#332003)

Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Côte de Nuits, Burgundy, France

750ml Bottle | In stock, 1 available
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