2014 Rhys "Family Farm Vineyard" San Mateo County Pinot Noir

SKU #1314198 93 points John Gilman

 The 2014 Family Farm Pinot Noir is a bit more typical of the vintage’s ripeness level, coming in at 13.5 percent. The bouquet seems a tad more marked by its new wood than most of these other single vineyard bottlings, but this is just the stage the wine is in today. The nose is a fine blend of cassis, black cherries, a touch of chicory, dark soil tones, espresso, mustard seed and cedar. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied, focused and a bit more vibrant in personality than its San Mateo stable-mate of Home Vineyard. The balance is impeccable, the tannins suave and perfectly integrated and the finish very long, nascently complex and utterly refined. I have a gut feeling that this will age even longer than the Home Vineyard 2014, but it is so beautifully balanced that it will also offer more enjoyment early on in its evolution. 93+ points  (8/2016)

93 points Vinous

 A striking, expressive wine, the 2014 Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard wraps around the palate with serious intensity. The effect of the drought comes through in the wine's sheer weight and textural breadth. The 40% whole clusters are nearly buried by the sheer intensity of the fruit. Black cherry, mocha, plum, graphite, sage and menthol give the 2014 much of its virile, imposing personality. The clay-rich soils here contribute to the wine's ample, creamy feel. Kevin Harvey adds that this site has been dry farmed for nine years. (AG)  (7/2016)

91 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 Here too there is a hint of menthol to the copiously spicy red raspberry, cherry and soft plum-suffused nose. There is fine richness and volume to the velvet-textured medium-bodied flavors that possess solid mid-palate concentration, all wrapped in a dusty, delicious and moderately firm finale. This is a bit more approachable than some of the wines in the range yet there is sufficient structure present to suggest that the Family Farm will require the better part of a decade to mature. *Outstanding*  (6/2017)

91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Described as the most Sonoma-like of their Pinot Noirs, the 2014 Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard comes from clay soils and sees roughly 40% whole clusters and one-third new French oak. This rounded, supple and sexy Pinot Noir lacks the tension and structure of the Santa Cruz Mountain releases, yet makes up for it with its sumptuous aromas and flavors of spiced red fruits, smoked herbs, forest floor and spice. (JD)  (10/2016)

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Additional Information:

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 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.
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:

Santa Cruz Mountains

- Vineyards dot the valleys and ridges of this coastal AVA just south of San Francisco. Microclimates make it difficult to generalize, and vineyards are frequently separated by acres of forests and meadowlands (not to mention entire towns!), but this is nonetheless known as a cooler-climate zone ideal for pinot noir. Ridge is doubtless the most famous local producer, with its cabernet blend, Monte Bello, named after a Santa Cruz mountain peak. High-quality, low-production chardonnay and some Rhône varietals prosper as well.