2013 Dumol "Connor-Joy Road Vineyard" Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

SKU #1254135 94 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *Two Stars* Over the years, DuMOL has been among the most consistently successful makers of expressive Pinot Noir, and these from the 2013 vintage buttress our long-held fondness for their wines. The "connor" wins top honors this year by dint of its fruity depth, its deft use of sweet oak and its altogether beguiling richness, and it earns an extra deep bow of appreciation for its altogether impeccable balance. It is, in short, a complete and involving look at the grape, and it will not approach its very best until its tenth birthday nears.  (2/2016)

92 points Vinous

 DuMol's 2013 Pinot Noir Connor Joy Road Vineyard is deep, fleshy and expressive, with plenty of succulent fruit that gives so much of its characteristic immediacy. Sweet red cherry, pomegranate, spices and wild flowers meld into the juicy finish laced with attractive rose petal and floral overtones. This is a strong set of new releases from DuMOL. Winemaker Andy Smith has really dialed in his approach here over the last few years, and it shows. Harvest dates have been moved up, while in general Smith is seeking a bit more freshness in his wines than was the case a few years ago. That is especially true of the Chardonnays, which now also spend eleven months in barrel followed by six months in tank, a fairly classic aging regime today in Burgundy that is less common in California. Smith has also introduced two new Cabernets, with more to follow. As readers probably know, Smith made the wines at Larkmead for years, so Cabernet is intimately familiar. The first wines are quite impressive. (AG)  (2/2016)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Clean, fresh and deftly balanced, exhibiting lively, snappy wild berry, cherry and raspberry flavors at the core, with fine-grained, mineral-laced tannins and a mouthwatering aftertaste. Drink now through 2019. 425 cases made. (JL)  (12/2015)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2013 Pinot Noir Connor from a Sonoma Coast site with multiple clones, was aged 15 months in 30% new French oak. This wine offers good, tart acids and a hint of Chinese black tea. It is medium-bodied, high-toned, with good, pure sweet and sour cherry fruit and some loamy notes along with underbrush. Drink it over the next 5-7 years. DuMOL is one of the more admirable wineries in Northern California, specializing primarily in Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, but with some intriguing Syrahs, a super Viognier, and as of the last several years, two Cabernet Sauvignons. Kerry Murphy is the long-time owner and partner with his winemaker, Scotsman Andy Smith. The change they have been implementing over the last several years is to pick slightly less ripe, then move their wines into tank for three months or more prior to bottling. In some cases, this has given the wines less intensity and exuberance, but this seems to be the stylistic direction they are committed. (RP)  (3/2016)

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By: Daniel Maas | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/27/2016 | Send Email
What do you get when you combine the following things: vibrant cherries, orange peel, and the minerality from pure and clean red, sandy soils? You get one of the finest expressions of Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir I've had in quite a long time. Slightly lighter in body when compared to Dumol's other reds, the key word here is BALANCE! The fruit... The warm hints of cedar and sandalwood... And the finely integrated tannins! It is a symphony of perfection that will age gorgeously over the next ten years.

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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.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Sonoma County

- Second in fame only to Napa, this "other" valley offers just about every climate and topography imaginable. From its cool and fog-enshrouded coastal regions on the far west, to the sprawling Alexander Valley on the boarder of Napa and the many little dips and peaks in between, Sonoma has been a vital wine-grape-growing region since the mid 1800s. Important sub-AVAs include Chalk Hill (known for chardonnay and sauvignon blanc), Dry Creek Valley (where zin is king) Knights Valley (largely cabernet land), Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast (both celebrated pinot and chardonnay zones).