2013 Love & Squalor Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1260601 93 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Enthusiast 100 of 2016, Editors' Choice* A sensational value, this is a Pinot lover's wine, beginning with the gorgeous color of a deep red/orange sunset. Cherries, chocolate, and a light touch of orange peel elevate the aromatics and inform the well-integrated midpalate. The wine lingers gracefully through an immaculate finish. (PG)  (8/2016)

90 points Vinous

 Vivid red. Mineral- and spice-accented aromas of fresh red berries and candied rose take on hints of succulent herbs and rhubarb with air. Shows very good clarity and lift to the zesty strawberry and floral pastille flavors, which slowly put on weight on the back half. Finishes long and nervy, offering gentle tannins and floral-tinged persistence. (JR)  (9/2016)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Lithe and crisp, with juicy cherry and floral flavors at the core, hinting at tea as the finish lingers deftly. (HS, Web-2016)

K&L Notes

I know it is a bit of an odd name for a winery but Love & Squalor has really been making some of the best, relatively unknown Pinot Noir and Rieslings coming out of the Willamette Valley. Started by Matt Berson, whose love for wine began with waiting tables in Portland's famous restaurant scene, and developed into a worldwide whirlwind tour of being a cellar rat in wineries in far-away places like New Zealand, Argentina and even in good ol' Napa Valley. After months of thinking about what he was going to call his fledgling winery he found an old paperback of J.D. Salinger's book Nine Stories and flipped to the opening story: "For Esme, with Love and Squalor." Thinking that was about as perfect a three word description for living the life of a winemaker he took it on as the name of his new winery. (Bryan Brick, K&L)

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Price: $25.99
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Staff Image By: Diana Turk | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/6/2016 | Send Email
A deliciously light Oregon Pinot Noir from a greener vintage, the 2013 Love & Squalor has zesty lift and herbal complexity without sacrificing supreme drinkability. Crunchy cranberry and red raspberry fruit shines, with hints of spice on the palate and an earthy yet clean finish. This is a nimble red with good acid; aromatic and layered, with high ratings to boot.

Staff Image By: Gary Norton | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/6/2016 | Send Email
We picked up this wine last year and everyone, staff and customers alike, fell in love with it. This year's bottling carries an attractive nose of wild strawberry, Bing cherry, red raspberry and Mandarin orange zest coupled with an herbacious undertone that continues onto the palate. This vintage has already received high acclaim from the press and as a result we expect it to move quickly. If you're an Oregon Pinot Noir fan and want to try this wine, I suggest picking up a few before they're gone.

Staff Image By: Bryan Brick | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/30/2016 | Send Email
The main thing that has struck me over the last couple of years with the Love and Squalor wines is just how epically drinkable they are. Sure they are cerebral, sure there is a tremendous acid/fruit structure to the wines, yes they are precise and focused but the thing you always come back to is just how much fun they are to drink. Clove, mace and cinnamon highlights hover over pure loganberry and wild blackberry fruit on the nose. Medium weight and full of layered black fruits with lush cassis and cola notes this is also bolstered by touches of pastilles and sweet fennel on the palate. Dry and mineral driven the finish portrays an overall prettiness and refinement that is just not found often from Pinot Noir at this price point all adding up to a wine that is urging you, pleading with you almost, to drink it not think about it, although both could be done with ease.

Staff Image By: Keith Palace | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/29/2016 | Send Email
With a bouquet of cherry, strawberry and red fruits on the nose a pleasant acidity helps bring out the tart cranberry flavors of this wine. It has ripe tannins and a silky texture with a more graceful minerality than normally found in American Pinots. This wine is ready to drink now.

Staff Image By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/29/2016 | Send Email
My kind of Pinot Noir, Love & Squalor opens on the nose with delicately floral, fragrant red fruits. The palate has such a lovely light touch, with lifted aromatics and a complete lack of imposed fruitiness, overt oak flavors or heavy tannins. Pinot Noir for Pinot Noir drinkers! Provided that you like 'em light and pretty, I'm quite confident you will love this beautiful Williamette Valley Pinot Noir.

Additional Information:


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.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.6