2005 Dehlinger Estate Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1038179 91 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *Two Stars* Smelling every bit as ripe as its stated 14.6% alcohol suggests, this concentrated wine keeps itself on track with a solid blending of sweet fruit and creamy, almost caramelly oak in its outgoing aromas and follows on the palate with a full body and supple texture. It is the type of Pinot that will work well with savory meats, game birds and even venison.  (6/2008)

91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Excellent acidity buttresses the sweet strawberry and black cherry fruit found in the 2005 Pinot Noir Estate. Again, forest floor, roasted herb, and plum-like characteristics are also found in this medium to full-bodied, pure Pinot. (RP)  (12/2007)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Bright red. Assertively perfumed, spicy nose features bright raspberry and cherry scents accented by orange peel and incense. Soft and sappy, offering energetic red berry flavors, silky texture and impressive mineral lift. Becomes more tangy on the finish, which delivers solid flavor punch with no loose ends or excess fat. The vibrancy of the fruit here is striking. (ST)  (6/2008)

90 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 A beautifully complex nose that is elegant, airy and ripe as it offers up red Pinot fruit, subtle spice and a hint of vegetal while introducing rich, sweet and pure flavors that possess fine definition and plenty of mid-palate concentration. While there is a hint of warmth on the dried herb-infused finish, it's not enough to detract materially from the overall sense of balance.  (10/2008)

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Price: $49.99
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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 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.

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 Gew├╝rztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.6