2010 Cristom "Louise Vineyard" Eola-Amity Hills Pinot Noir

SKU #1126815 93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Vivid ruby-red. Exotically perfumed scents of cherry-cola, vanillin oak, Asian spices and potpourri. Deeply pitched red and dark berry flavors are complemented by notes of candied flowers, five-spice powder and rooty sassafras Youthfully firm tannins add focus and grip to an impressively long, energetic finish of excellent clarity and lingering spiciness. (JR)  (8/2013)

92 points Wine & Spirits

 This is a bit mute at first, with measured aromas of cinnamon and black cherry. The wine is firm and structured, the persistent mineral tannins keeping it on point. Its leanness suggests it has a long life ahead of it.  (4/2013)

91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Cristom’s 2010 Pinot Noir Louise Vineyard -- due the differences in inclination and exposure -- is often in part the first and in part the last Cristom vineyard picked, and it was both this year, coming in on October 16th and then again on the 29th. Fresh and confitured cherries are infused with their pits; blond tobacco; and crushed stone. Firm in feel and gripping in finishing intensity, this is another 2010 that reminds me of many 2011s in its energy as well as specifically in notes of sassafras and ginger. It is likely to need more time than its stable mates to unfold. But there is fine structure and energy to support more than a decade’s aging. (DS)  (10/2013)

91 points Wine Spectator

 Firm with tannins around a dark-flavored core of blueberry and black currant, veering toward smoke and autumn leaf notes as the finish presses against the tannins. (HS)  (7/2013)

K&L Notes

Louise vineyard is the oldest of Cristom's estate-planted vineyards, which they began planting with Dijon and Pommard clones in 1993. The 2010 bottling was made from several vineyard lots which were fermented with 39% whole clusters on native yeasts and aged for 19 months in 2/3 new French oak. A savory nose of cherry compote introduces a generous and balanced flavor profile with medium body and an age-worthy structure.

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Price: $44.99
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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.


- 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.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5