2010 Mount Eden "Estate" Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir

SKU #1113011 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2010 Pinot Noir Estate is an exceptionally elegant wine. Dried cherries, plums, exotic spices, mint and crushed flowers waft from the glass, with plenty of lift from the use of 50% whole clusters. There is a lot of personality here, but readers will need to be very patient while the stems integrate. The 2010 is striking from start to finish. I can’t wait to see how this stunning Pinot ages. Anticipated maturity: 2020-2030. Mount Eden is one of the United States’ great heritage estates. The Chardonnays and Pinots have a track record for aging spectacularly well. As outstanding as the Chardonnays and Pinots can be, I was also pretty surprised by the quality of the Cabernet Sauvignons. Winemaker and proprietor Jeffrey Patterson favors indigenous fermentations for all his wines, which are also bottled with no fining or filtration. The top Chardonnay bottling, the Estate, spends a year in barrel and six months in steel, as do so many of the top whites in Burgundy these days. The Pinots are made with anywhere from 20-50% stem inclusion, which can make the wines hard to understand when young. If I am looking for an aged bottle of California Chardonnay or Pinot, Mount Eden is always at or near the top of my list. In this section, I have listed all of the wines from Domaine Eden, Mount Eden’s second label first, followed by the wines of Mount Eden. (AG)  (8/ 2012)

94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Brilliant ruby. Intensely perfumed red berry and floral scents are complicated by notes of star anise, cinnamon and orange zest. Spicy, focused and pure, offering vibrant raspberry and bitter cherry flavors that become fleshier and sweeter with air. Packs a serious punch but comes off as elegant and precise, finishing with superb thrust, velvety tannins and persistent florality. This elegant, balanced wine should age beautifully.  (12/ 2013)

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Price: $59.99

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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:

Santa Cruz Mountains

- Vineyards dot the valleys and ridges of this coastal AVA just south of San Francisco. Microclimates make it difficult to generalize, and vineyards are frequently separated by acres of forests and meadowlands (not to mention entire towns!), but this is nonetheless known as a cooler-climate zone ideal for pinot noir. Ridge is doubtless the most famous local producer, with its cabernet blend, Monte Bello, named after a Santa Cruz mountain peak. High-quality, low-production chardonnay and some Rhône varietals prosper as well.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.8