2012 Donum Estate "Ten Oaks" Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1261755 91 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 This flirts with reduction and while it's subtle, it's enough to take the top notes off of the red cherry, currant and subtle plum scents; if you're going to try a bottle young I would suggest decanting it for 20 minutes or so first. The lush, round and very generously proportioned medium-bodied flavors possess a highly seductive mid-palate before concluding in a dusty finish that really fans out. I like the complexity and if your taste runs to big, bold and rich Pinots, this would make for a good choice.  (10/2015)

91 points Wine Enthusiast

 From an estate-farmed property in the Russian River, this otherwise Carneros-based producer shows it can handle different conditions with aplomb, taking its foot off the pedal a touch in terms of power and concentration in this wine. Floral, soft and silky, it remains complex in red and black berry, with handfuls of truffled earth. (VB)  (11/2015)

90 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *One Star* Bright and alive with lots of vital, young, red cherry fruit played against modest oak and touches of dried brush in the nose, the Ten Oaks bottling is at once velvety and vital on the palate as well, and its wonderfully continuous flavors exhibit altogether striking precision and length. It is as well-balanced as any of the Donum efforts and ever so slightly lighter on its feet than most, and, while its combination of richness and real grace makes it a Pinot that is easily approached now, it is structured to keep and improve for several years.  (6/2015)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Donum lets the vineyards do the talking for them, and they have a low alcohol (13.4%) cuvée called the 2012 Pinot Noir Ten Oaks. Its dark ruby color is followed by notes of pomegranate, red currants, sweet cherries and incense. Medium-bodied, pure and elegant with a hint of wild strawberries, it is reminiscent of a premier cru Beaune. Drink it over the next 5-6 years. (RP)  (12/2014)

Wine Spectator

 Fresh and snappy, with vibrant mineral, red berry, spice and red licorice flavors. Ends with firm, fine-grained tannins and good length. Drink now through 2022. (JL)  (4/2015)

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Varietal:

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 Sp├Ątburgunder 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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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:

Alexander Valley/Russian River

- Among Sonoma County's northernmost appellations, the Alexander Valley AVA acts as a gateway to neighboring Napa to the east and Mendocino to the north. It is a sprawling appellation, with pockets of distinct microclimates and soils, and as such, is home to a variety of wine grapes and styles. Nearly everything grows in the Alexander Valley, though Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay are the most widely planted grapes. The Russian River Valley lies to the south of Alexander Valley, and is marked by much cooler temperatures and frequently heavy fog. The Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grown here are some of the state's finest and most sought-after. Aromatic whites like Gew├╝rztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.4