2012 Joseph Swan "Trenton View Vineyard" Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Ruby-red. Blackberry, cherry, sassafras and rose petal on the smoky nose. Pungent, spicy and broad, offering good weight to its dark berry jam, herb and spicecake flavors. Picks up a wild, cured meat nuance with air that carries through a warm, powerful finish firmed by juicy acidity and dusty tannins. Rod Berglund is another grower/winemaker who told me that as seductive as the 2012s can be, the 2011s probably intrigue him more because "there's a freshness, a balance and a restraint to them that's just so classically pinot." With that in mind he thinks that the best 2011s will outrun their younger siblings, even if they're not exactly showing much of their potential just yet. He said that he doesn't want to sound like a downer by calling the 2012s "obvious" but compared to '11 and '10 "they're so much more approachable and easy to love." They'll likely be that way throughout their evolution, he believes, thus enjoyable at every stage of their lives, "which isn't true for '11 and 10."
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The only 2012 I tasted was the 2012 Pinot Noir Trenton View Vineyard. Offering an education in Pinot Noir, this wine’s washed out, light ruby/garnet color suggests it could be a rose. However, aromas of sassafras, plum, pomegranate and a whiff of cherries soar from the glass. Sensual, disarming and charming with more flavor depth and texture than one would guess by looking at the color, it finished at a lofty 14.6% alcohol, and can be drunk over the next several years or longer. Readers familiar with Burgundy’s Domaine Dujac’s style will enjoy this particular bottling from Joseph Swan. By the way, all these Pinot Noirs are made from their own clonal material known as the Swan clone.
An understated style, this medium-bodied version is light, pale garnet in color, showing cherry, rhubarb and forest floor notes. Clean and well-balanced. Drink now through 2020. 412 cases made.