2008 Elk Cove "Reserve" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1058668

93(+?) points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright ruby. Pungent, intensely spicy bouquet of raspberry and blackberry preserves, potpourri, wilted rose and cola, with a suave vanilla quality in the background. Juicy, penetrating red berry preserve flavors blend richness and vivacity smoothly and show an open-knit, sweet character. Supple tannins arrive late and add focus and grip to the impressively long, spicy finish. Drinkable now with a little air, but this really deserves a few years of patience." (Ju/Aug 10) 92 points Wine Spectator: 'Crisp in texture and tightly wound, with a strong mineral note running through the dark berry and licorice flavors, which linger easily on the beautifully refined finish. Drink now through 2015. 396 cases made." (10/10) Hand selected and blended from a select few vineyards, this eight-barrel lot was crafted to highlight the opulence coming from this spectacular vintage. This wine has perfumed aromatics, which only intensifies on the palate, hinting at its greatness to come. The finish is long and balanced with ample texture for aging. Only the finest French cooperage was used on this blend, consisting of 80% new oak and all 3-year air-dried, Burgundian coopered barrels.

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Price: $74.99
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Staff Image By: Bryan Brick | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/17/2010 | Send Email
If you absolutely, positively have to give someone the best, I can think of few wines better than the 2008 Elk Cove “Reserve” Willamette Valley Pinot Noir ($89.99). This was my favorite Pinot of 2010 and will only get better with time. This has it all, expressive aromas, intense deeply set fruit, structure to keep it going for at least a decade and label recognition to boot!

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Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- Highly touted for its Pinot Noirs, Oregon is part of the up-and-coming winemaking industry in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. Most of Oregon is directly affected by the climate coming off of the Pacific Ocean, giving it mild winters and wet summers. This makes it a difficult place to ripen grapes, but some say that the harder grapes have to struggle, the more complex they will turn out to be. Chardonnay and Pinot Gris are two important and successful grapes grown in Oregon.