2013 Eyrie Vineyards "Outcrop Vineyard" Dundee Hills Pinot Noir
*Cellar Selection* Outcrop was planted in 1982. A hint of leather (not too much) along with scents of sassafras and crushed roses, open into a peppery palate with cranberries and red fruits. Ample acidity carries it into a penetrating finish. Drink 2020 through 2035 and beyond.
Limpid red. Candied flowers and raspberry on the fragrant nose, with suggestions of cola and lavender adding complexity. Sappy and seamless on the palate, offering juicy red fruit and floral pastille flavors of noteworthy depth. At once lively and robust, finishing with fine-grained tannins and firm grip. Jason Lett has definitely found his footing at the historic winery that his father David founded in 1966. While his dad made a number of outstanding wines over the years, Jason's growing body of work has featured, by my reckoning, a far greater percentage of hits than this estate produced in the time leading up to his succession in 2005. Jason possesses an experimental streak, especially in the vineyards, and he told me that he "doesn't take anything for granted or subscribe to hard-and-fast rules" because even though his winery is now 50 years old, "that's really nothing in the grand scheme. We still can't say that we really knows what's best at this point, so why stop being curious?" (JR)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2013 Pinot Noir Outcrop comes from vines planted in 1982 and 2000. Slightly deeper in colour than the Sisters, it offers a potent rose petal and red cherry-scented bouquet with a pastille-like element that becomes more prominent with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp acidity, fine tannin, very Côte de Beaune in style (think of a vineyard like Beaune Grèves), with a dash of pepper towards the controlled and focused finish. This is a lovely Pinot Noir to enjoy over the next decade. As you would expect from a producer with the legacy of Eyrie, their latest releases were utterly absorbing to taste. And I don't mean in the sense of every single wine desperately trying to impress, rather a lesson in wines that articulate their terroirs and the growing season, come what may. Not everything is going to be a hole in one. They are not wines that expend every ounce of energy trying to impress, rather wines that are happy whatever they are. Some of the outlier white varieties still leave me perplexed, but they remain interesting to taste. Come to something more familiar like Chardonnay, and though it is a cliché, I find that here quality takes off. Moreover, I've drunk sufficient older vintages to know that these wines can repay the same length of cellaring as many white Burgundy (as a 1992 Estate Chardonnay proved). (NM)
Firm in texture, with focused cherry and floral flavors on a deft, open-textured frame, finishing with a hint of orange peel. Lingers gracefully. Best after 2017. 113 cases made. (HS)