2010 DuMol Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1107073 Connoisseurs Guide

 Despite leaning to ripeness in its initial aromas, this wine comes with plenty of black cherry fruit in tow and adds in distinct oaky richness and a quiet walnut-like note. It is medium-full-bodied in palate weight and turns out to be lighter on its feet than first impressions seem to advise, and its near-supple texture and nicely crafted fruit hold it in good stead through to a balanced, mid-depth finish.  (10/ 2012)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The entry-level 2010 Pinot Noir is big, juicy and exuberant. There is no shortage of fruit in this flashy Pinot. The 2010 is a terrific effort considering its production of 4,600 cases. It is ideally enjoyed over the next few years. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2018. Winemaker Andy Smith describes 2009 as a “sweet, forward vintage,” while 2011 is more “dynamic and commercial.” Smith reserves his highest praise for 2010, which he calls his favorite among the three current vintages. In 2011, Smith bulked out 20% of his Pinot Noirs, including the entire production of the Eoin. All the 2011 Pinots came in before the rains. Smith used whole clusters only for the Aidan, as botrytis was an issue in all the other Pinot vineyards. The Charles Heintz Chardonnay came in after the rains. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to taste the 2011 Syrahs, as the final blends had not yet been put together at the time of this tasting. In broad terms, the DuMol Chardonnays are all fermented and aged in barrel, with no lees stirring. Some of the wines are aged in slightly larger 300-liter barrels, and at times the malolactic fermentations are partly blocked, which results in wines that are texturally rich but also full of energy, a combination that is rare and hard to achieve.  (4/ 2013)

K&L Notes

This 2010 Russian River Pinot Noir from DuMol is a blend of 34% Dutton Ranch, 16% Gunsalus, 12% DuMOL Estate, 10% Abbott, 8% Hansel, 8% Joy Rd, 6% Greywacke, and 6% Sonoma Stage. The clusters were hand-harvested and sorted in the vineyard and again sorted at the winery before native yeast fermentation. The wine then spent 11 months in 35% new French oak. From winemaker Andy Smith: "Bright ruby red. Warm, inviting aromas draw you in: bright and lively then dark and complex. Wild cherry, fresh raspberry, sassafras and grilled meat. Complex tobacco and cocoa notes. Juicy palate entry then a fine interplay between red and black fruits. Black tea, cranberry and apple skin tartness. Darker woodsy-truffle notes. Broad silky texture develops with air but always framed by muscular enveloping tannins."

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By: Joel Nicholas |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/8/2013  | Send Email
We had the pleasure of tasting the 2011 versions of both of these wines during our recent visit to the winery but they will not be released for several months. Right now we have the 2010s and both wines are drinking beautifully. The Pinot Noir is warm and earthy, bursting with aromas of tobacco leaf and cocoa followed by dark red fruits on the palate.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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:

Alexander Valley/Russian River

- Among Sonoma County's northernmost appellations, the Alexander Valley AVA acts as a gateway to neighboring Napa to the east and Mendocino to the north. It is a sprawling appellation, with pockets of distinct microclimates and soils, and as such, is home to a variety of wine grapes and styles. Nearly everything grows in the Alexander Valley, though Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay are the most widely planted grapes. The Russian River Valley lies to the south of Alexander Valley, and is marked by much cooler temperatures and frequently heavy fog. The Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grown here are some of the state's finest and most sought-after. Aromatic whites like Gewürztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.