2012 Elk Cove Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1150582 90 points Wine & Spirits

 **Best Buy** This wine’s dark cherry aromas are supported by a pronounced oak frame, as dark as bitter chocolate. It’s intense and brooding, with oak playing more of a supporting role in the texture and flavor. Cellar and let the wood settle for a year.  (8/ 2014)

Wine Enthusiast

 This is a fine introduction to an outstanding Oregon Pinot Noir vintage. Forward and instantly accessible, it plays off pretty cherry fruit flavors and aromatics. Tannins are fully ripe and the acidity has kept pace.  (6/ 2014)

K&L Notes

From the winery: "Brilliant ruby red in color with raspberry, rose and licorice on the nose. Silky and smooth in texture, this Pinot is bursting with juicy cherry and cranberry on the palate with subtle notes of thyme and black pepper. 2012 will go down as one of the finest in Oregon history in terms of quality of the raw materials. Mother Nature really smiled on us with not only a rain-free harvest season but perhaps more importantly with tiny berries and clusters. The small fruit size allowed us to effortlessly and gently extract the concentrated fruit and ripe tannins of the perfectly ripe grapes. According to owner/winemaker Adam Campbell, 'the wines from 2012 remind me and my folks of classic vintages like 1998 and 1994. Small clusters and berries give us an amazing skin-to-juice ratio, allowing us to be incredibly gentle through fermentation and still come up with powerful concentration and ripeness of fruit.' Early reviews of the 2012 vintage use descriptors like 'Stunning, 'Amazing' & 'Epic' making Oregon winemakers giddy that 2012 could go down as the best vintage in our 50 year winemaking history."

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Price: $26.99

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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:

Oregon

- 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