2011 Lothian Vineyards Pinot Noir Elgin

SKU #1151654 90 points Wine Spectator

 Supple, with scented black tea and sandalwood notes woven into the core of steeped cherry and plum fruit. Long and silky through the finish, with a perfumy edge that really lingers. Suggests a combination of New World fruit and Chambolle-like elegance. Drink now through 2013.

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2011 Pinot Noir was raised in 30% new oak. It has an attractive bouquet with smudged dark plum and cranberry fruit, perhaps just a touch of warmth but nothing to get worried about. The palate is medium-bodied with decent structure, clean fleshy cranberry and wild strawberry fruit intermingling with hints of Chinese 5-spice that builds nicely toward a gently spiced, clove-tinged finish. This Pinot Noir has plenty of character and stylistically sits nicely between Old World and New. Drink now-2017. (NM)  (10/2013)

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Modestly saturated red. High-toned, inviting aromas of strawberry, spices, leather and wild herbs. Spicy and intense, but with a faint bitter green edge to the red berry and earth flavors. Finishes with dusty, slightly drying tannins.  (6/2013)

K&L Notes

This cool-climate Burgundian varietal thrives in the unique mesoclimate of Lothian Vineyards. It has a bouquet abounding with ripe strawberry, blood-orange, white pepper, nutmeg and floral notes. The Pinot Noir's medium-bodied palate is a mixture of black cherry, ripe strawberry and tobacco spice, with undertones of weathered leather, all of which are tempered with fine oak, mineral and savory flavors. The Lothian Pinot Noir comes from a 2.25-hectare vineyard planted with three different clones. The grapes were hand-harvested, gently crushed and fermented in open fermenters for 10 days. Ambient yeasts and manual pigeage coaxed both flavor and color from the fruit. It was then racked off into French oak barrique (30% new) for malolactic fermentation. The wine was then barrel matured for 11 months and lightly filtered before bottling. Total production 400 cases. Gold Medal Winner 2013 International Wine Challenge: "Touch of minerality and perfume on nose. Complex, earthy aromas. Silky and round on palate with a soft finish with good length."

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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.

South Africa

- Now that it has adopted a multi-racial attitude, and now that the world has embraced its government and its exports, South Africa has become a major wine producer. Unfortunately, South Africa has had a difficult time joining the ranks of competitive winemaking countries. During the anti-apartheid sanctions in the 1980s, South African wine was dealt the huge blow when it was removed from the international market, and for political reasons it was quite difficult for wine producers to market wine to the black majority. Things are finally looking up for the wine industry here, and quality has never been higher. South Africa produces a grape cloned from Pinot Noir and Cinsault, called Pinotage, which is the country's unique varietal. Chenin Blanc (known as Steen) makes up one-third of its vines. Cabernet, Merlot, Pinot Noir and Shiraz are becoming increasingly popular as are Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Click for a list of bestselling items from South Africa.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5