California’s Grand Cru, The Sonoma Coast

“Has any American Pinot Noir scaled such a height?  I would submit that one zone has a better shot at Grand Cru status than any other: a small portion of extreme western Sonoma County bordering the Pacific Ocean.

The new name, yet to be formally approved at this writing (since named Sonoma Coast AVA), hardly rings any bells. But names such as, Blue-Slide Ridge, Flowers Camp, Meeting Ridge, and Hirsch Vineyards surely do. These wines, among a few others in this remote and rugged spot, are American Pinot Noirs like no others.” – Wine Spectator, Oct 15th 2005

Learn more about the Sonoma Coast AVA

2010 Wine Spectrum Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast – $29/Bottle

Wine Spectrum Rated 94: Once again exclusively made by our anonymous celebrity winemaker, from select top vineyards of the true Sonoma Coast. The beautiful nose on this Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir reveals this well-kept secret of a wine, with pure red raspberry, cherries and rose petals intermingled with spicy notes of white pepper, forest floor and crisp oak. The long finish is dominated by red fruit tones. This is a lean, yet full-flavored, well-structured Pinot crafted by traditional, old world techniques. Very enjoyable at the moment but will age nicely for 3-5 years. Only 224 cases produced. 

2007 Talisman Pinot Noir ‘Mystery Vineyard’, Sonoma Coast – $49/Bottle

Wine Spectrum Rated 95+: Simple winemaking is often the path to complex wines. The nose is brimming with brambly raspberries, mineral and layers of Asian spices. The entry is soft and round, but immediately supported by a spine of fine-grained tannins. By mouth, the fruit is cherry, black tea and brown spices with a slight tarry note, followed by a persistent finish. Only 172 cases produced. 

2012 Sojourn Pinot Noir ‘Rodgers Creek’, Sonoma Coast – $56/Bottle

Pinot Report 94, Wine Spectrum Rated 94+: Rodgers Creek Vineyard is well-suited for Pinot Noir, sitting high on a ridge in the heart of the Petaluma Gap and taking the full brunt of wind and thick fog that defines this cool climate zone. Sojourn’s blocks within the vineyard are western-facing with broad sun exposure. In the warm 2012 vintage, this exposure to the elements was a key factor in allowing the grapes to hang and achieve complex flavors and ripe tannins. The resulting wine is a fabulous expression of the vineyard site and unique soils. It is a showy wine – very expressive and forward, with smooth textures and a lingering finish. Familiar aromas of mushroom and soy overlay layers of red fruit flavors, earth and hints of rosemary.

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