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Seize the Day with an “Exciting” 95-Point California Pinot - 11/21/2017 - Pinot Noir (domestic)

When it comes to Pinot Noir, the buyers at K&L have a rigorous set of criteria to meet before it graces our shelves. One that recently checked all our boxes and left us downright impressed was the 95-point, 2014 Carpe Diem from Anderson Valley. As the critic’s reviews and staff notes below will attest, the Carpe Diem is pure elegance in a bottle. With a profile that harkens in many ways to a Premier Cru Burgundy, it leans less on explosive fruit and more on nuanced tones of wild strawberry, rose petal, cinnamon, and clove. Its texture is ultra-smooth with a lush mouthfeel and fine tannins. In essence, it is the perfect bottle for those who love an old world, classically style Pinot. Best of all it comes to you with the very attractive price of $24.99. Given its layered complexity and subtle, refined approach, we’d happily pay double that price. This is a perfect Pinot to enjoy in the near term, but go ahead and lay it down for 5 to 10 years and watch it develop beautifully. This 2014 is sure to coax many a smile over the holidays.

Staff Image

2014 Carpe Diem Anderson Valley Pinot Noir ($24.99)

95 points Decanter: "Oz Clarke (95): An exciting wine that is positively lean in style, and then a pure, dry strawberry fruit asserts itself on the palate, mingled with herbs and rosehip, and just a little nutty sweetness to soften it. Ronan Sayburn MS (95): A remarkable mix of deliciousness and elegance: red and black fruits coming through on the nose and lingering throughout the palate making this a well-balanced wine with great length." (08/2017)

91 points Wine Enthusiast: "Bright aromas and vibrant fruit flavors combine for a very energized, beautifully balanced wine that will shine at the dinner table. It has rhubarb and sour-cherry aromas, red-cherry and cinnamon flavors, a lively texture and lingering finish. (JG)" (12/2016)

Staff ImageAnthony Russo | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 17, 2017

Though still on the light side (it is Pinot Noir, after all), I find the Carpe Diem to have just a bit more texture than most Pinot Noirs of it's caliber. These added dimensions are beautifully obvious on the nose, where aromas of cool strawberry pie pull you in immediately. Likewise on the palate, the extra texture is super smooth, but doesn't disappear without making some it's delicate nuances known. Perfect for Pinot fans who need something with a touch more weight for a meal or Merlot/Cabernet fans who want something a bit lighter.

Staff ImageMari Keilman | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 11, 2017

The Carpe Diem Pinot Noir is classic Anderson Valley Pinot Noir. There is a beautiful wave of ripe, red strawberry and cherry that pops on the fuller-than-expected palate. And while there's a touch more weight than usual, the Carpe Diem has a bright, playful mouthfeel that is matched by lively baking spices and rose petals on the palate. This is a fun, inexpensive Pinot that will delight at every holiday occasion this season!

Blake Conklin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: September 28, 2017

The 2014 Vintage of Carpe Diem is very well balanced, and a perfect expression of Anderson Valley Pinot. Tasting this bottle reminded me of what I loved so much about Anderson Valley in first place. With notes of cranberry, cherry and a touch of cinnamon, this bottle should go perfectly with any dinner scenario for the light bodied red drinker.

Staff ImageTrey Beffa | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: September 27, 2017

If I wanted to trick someone in a blind tasting, I would pour this and watch them guess Pinot Noir from Burgundy. This wine is very delicate with a pleasant amount of strawberry fruit that is rounded out with hints of clove and spice. This is a crisp, nearly tart wine that is perfect for the upcoming holiday dinners.