2011 Chehalem "Ridgecrest" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1155354 92 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Cellar Selection* Proving that exceptional wines can be (and were) made in this cool, light vintage, this estate-grown selection is both elegant and complex. Flavors of mixed wild berries, a streak of tea, a whiff of peach and compelling balance carry it through an extended finish.  (12/ 2013)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Peppery tannins add interest to the lithe core of cherry and cinnamon, with hints of caramel as the finish lingers enticingly. This has a nice lift of acidity, but finishes creamy and light. Best from 2015 through 2019. 515 cases made.  (10/ 2013)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Chehalem’s 2011 Pinot Noir Ridgecrest Vineyard brims with penetratingly-bright, tart-edged elderberry and piquant huckleberry, incorporating aromatic allusions to fresh and distilled red berries as well. At more than a third new wood, I don’t register any obvious influence or interference such as detected from the higher level in the corresponding Wind Ridge Block. A hint of salinity and brown spices adds appeal to the infectiously juicy finish of this Pinot bound to merit repeated attention through at least 2017.  (10/ 2013)

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Bright red. Fresh red fruit and floral pastille aromas are lifted by a zesty note of orange pith and show very good clarity. Clean and precise, offering bitter cherry and mocha flavors sharpened by tangy acidity. In a nervy, brisk style, with a firm finishing bite shaped by smooth, even tannins. This elegant pinot checks in at 12.5% alcohol.  (8/ 2013)

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Price: $44.99

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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 (%): 12.5