2011 Roar Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

SKU #1125234 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Looking at the Pinot Noirs, which as a whole have beautiful, savory aromas and flavors with bright acidity, the 2011 Pinot Noir is a beautiful, upfront and friendly effort that has classic wild strawberry, underbrush and toasted spice aromas and flavors as well as a medium-bodied, fresh and well textured mouthfeel. Clean, classically constructed and balanced, it should evolve gracefully for another 4-5 years, although I see no reason to delay gratification. Drink now-2019. (JD)  (8/2013)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Deep red. Fresh cherry and dark berry aromas are complicated by notes of cola and woodsmoke. Chewy and precise on the palate, offering bitter cherry and blackberry flavors and an zesty note of peppery spices. Closes smoky and long, with a hint of bitter chocolate and youthful tannic grip. (JR)  (11/2013)

Wine Spectator

 Exhibits a graceful mix of subtle plum, blueberry, spice and mineral that builds slowly and engagingly, ending on a delicate note. Drink now through 2019. (JL)  (8/2013)

K&L Notes

Named for the sounds of the coastal winds and mountain creeks of the Santa Lucia Highlands, Roar was launched in 2003 by Gary and Rosella Franscioni. The duo, along with Gary Pisoni and Adam and Dianna Lee of Siduri wines, helped catapult the Santa Lucia Highlands to fame with phenomenal high-scoring, vineyard-designated wines from Rosella's and Garys' Vineyards (the Franscionis co-own the latter with Pisoni). Typically not as bombastic as the Garys' Vineyard, this appellation bottling was aged in 46% new French oak for 11 months before bottling. Tasting notes from the winery: "Our 2011 Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir opens with the most inviting, fresh, young Pinot nose of Christmas spice, carbonic notes and wet gravel. On the palate firm tannins and good acidity carry black cherry, sweet rhubarb and berry notes through to the earthy, loamy finish."

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Price: $39.99
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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.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Santa Lucia Highlands