2006 Ken Wright "Guadalupe" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir (1.5L)

SKU #1035855 91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2006 Pinot Noir Guadalupe is sourced from a vineyard that Ken Wright has been working with since 1992 and has been replanted from phylloxera. The vineyard has just about fully recovered as this effort demonstrates. Dark ruby-colored, it gives up mineral and earth aromas, pain grille, and black fruits. On the palate dark fruits dominate and there is a firm structure to hold the layered flavors together. This lengthy effort will drink well from 2010 to 2018. (JM)  (10/2008)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Bright medium red. Spicy cherry, violet and gingerbread on the nose. Round and fleshy, offering sweet dark berry flavors and gentle tannins that gain strength with air. The spiciness resonates through the long, chewy finish. Offers plenty of richness without coming across as thick. (JR)  (5/2008)

Wine Spectator

 Smooth and generous with its dark berry, cola and spice flavors, lingering effortlessly on the round, velvety, slightly hot finish. (HS)  (12/2008)

K&L Notes

Planted in 1989 in the distinctive marine sedimentary soils of the Yamhill-Carlton District, the Guadalupe Vineyard produces tiny-berried clusters with amazing inky-dark color. The resulting wines confirm that depth with characteristics of black fruits, cocoa, leather and earth.

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Price: $109.99

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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.

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.


- 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.