2011 Calera "Selleck" Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

SKU #1176733 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2011 Pinot Noir Selleck is a brilliant 2011 that does everything right. Framboise, rose petal, sappy underbrush and spice all give way to an energetic, taut and vibrant-styled Pinot that has perfect balance and fine tannin structure. Fermented with 100% whole cluster and aged 18 months in 30% new French oak, it’s a rocking effort to enjoy over the coming 5-7 years. These latest releases from Calera are rock-solid across the board, and looking at the 2011 Pinot Noirs specifically, they show the best of the cooler vintage and are gorgeous wines. (JD)  (8/2014)

93 points Wine Enthusiast

 This comes from one of Josh Jensen's vineyards that got barely a half-ton an acre this vintage. It offers aromas of sandalwood, leather, dried strawberry and sagebrush and is light and airy on the palate, with medium red fruits, roots and bark complexity on the midpalate. The wine finishes on nuances of hibiscus and black tea. (MK)  (4/2015)

92 points Vinous

 The 2011 Pinot Noir Selleck Vineyard is the most reticent and least fully formed of Calera's 2011 Pinots. Deep and intense in the glass, the Selleck boasts superb richness and tons of potential. Dark red stone fruits, cinnamon, crushed flowers and mint all flesh out on the silky, radiant finish. Readers need to be patient, but the Selleck has all of the requisites to develop into a hugely rewarding wine. The only thing it needs is time. This is a fabulous set of new releases from Calera. I have never been crazy about the 2010 Pinots here, but the 2011s see this historic estate back at the top. With one exception, the de Villiers, the Calera Pinots are made with a healthy dose of whole clusters, which gives the wines considerable aromatic lift and complexity. In 2011, the growing season was very mild, with no days above 77 degrees. The harvest took place between late September and early November. (AG) 92+  (7/2014)

91 points Wine & Spirits

 Despite a relatively cool vintage, the 2011 Selleck feels heady in its ripeness, with a brandied-cherry tone to the fruit and a bitter chicory bite to the tannins. It’s not a classical pinot noir-the sun-ripened fruit and Mediterranean spice put it closer to Etna Rosso than Burgundy-but its power is captivating. This is rich enough to pour with braised lamb shanks. (214 cases)  (10/2014)

91 points Wine Spectator

 Tight and rustic, with firm, chunky blueberry and wild berry flavors, featuring subtle watermelon and strawberry accents in the background. Ends with vibrant acidity, flinty minerality and a refreshing finish. Best from 2015 through 2023. (JL, Web Only-2015)

K&L Notes

Planted in 1975 and situated with a southeastern exposure at 2200 feet in elevation but still in direct line of cooling winds from the Pacific, the 4.8 acre Sellack Vineyard is composed of rocky soils that feature a mix of decomposed granite and limestone outcroppings. It enjoys a bit more sun exposure than the other sites, yielding wines of flavor intensity and structural refinement.

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Price: $89.99
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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.