2004 Williams Selyem "Westside Road Neighbors" Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1033201 90 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 A pretty and notably ripe nose of spiced red and blue pinot fruit aromas nuanced with beguiling violet hints that continue onto the rich, round, sweet and textured flavors that are utterly delicious, culminating in a dusty, mouth coating and persistent finish. There is a noticeable touch of finishing warmth though not really enough to detract from the overall sense of style and grace. Recommended.  (7/2006)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good red-ruby. Exotic, very ripe aromas of cherry, raspberry, cola and orange peel. Broad, lush and fat, with expressive flavors of strawberry, minerals and spices along with some loamy earth tones. Finishes with lush tannins and lingering sweetness. A classic Russian River Valley Pinot made mostly from fruit from the Allen, Riverblock, Flax, Bucher and Bacigalupi vineyards.  (6/2006)

Connoisseurs Guide

 There is plenty of rich fruit in the nose of this nicely filled wine, but, if obviously extracted, it is a little less generous with its cherry-like flavors than promised. Bound up and tightened by a bit of pushy, slightly piquant acidity at the moment, it should benefit by a few years of time in the cellar in which to settle down and expand.  (6/2006)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The most seductive but somewhat superficial wine is the 2004 Pinot Noir Westside Road Neighbors, made from the fruit of five nearby vineyards that are blended together. This has a slightly darker color than the previous two wines, with more sweet cherry, damp earth, and underbrush notes.  (12/2006)

Wine & Spirits

 This wine is a blend of estate-grown fruit with selections from neighboring vineyards on Westside Road. It's round and smoky, with soft flavors of baked strawberries and root beer around the edges. Roast duck would fill in the middle of the wine.  (8/2006)

Wine Enthusiast

 This is a blend of vineyards from which the winery sources its fruit. It's a very good wine, dry and crisp, with ripe flavors of cherries, raspberries, root beer and herbs. The texture is silky, the balance impeccable, but it's a tad thin in the midpalate.  (11/2006)

Wine Spectator

 Sleek and delicate, with a trim band of spicy cherry, earth, mineral and sage. Ends with a dash of citrus that gives it a cleansing quality.  (10/2006)

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Price: $59.99
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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.


- 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.
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 Gewürztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.2