2012 Kosta Browne "Keefer Ranch" Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1186590 96 points Connoisseurs Guide

 We have lately come to the conclusion that the Keefer Ranch Vineyard just may be one of the best Pinot sites around, and Kosta Browne's 2012 version goes a long way in confirming our feelings. It is wonderfully rich in very pure and precise fruit with a lovely veneer of rich and wholly sympathetic oak, and its remarkable layering and striking palatal length make it a wine that compels sip after slow sip. Even though young, it is a brilliant wine of great reach and range, and it is an absolute keeper that we can comfortably predict will gain in beauty over the next half-dozen years. *Three Stars*  (7/2014)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Brilliant ruby. High-pitched aromas of red berries, cherry skin and rose, with a minerally nuance gaining strength with air. Sappy and precise, offering taut raspberry and floral pastille flavors and a kick of cracked pepper. Silky tannins give shape to the long, incisive finish, which leaves spicecake and floral notes behind. (ST)  (6/2014)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Classic in style, with pretty red berry styled fruits, assorted spring flowers, white pepper and loads of baking spices (all-spice, cinnamon, clove), the 2012 Pinot Noir Keefer Ranch Vineyard comes from the Green Valley appellation in the southwestern part of the Russian River Valley. It has a beautiful core of sweet fruit, medium-bodied richness, and a lively, fresh feel on the palate, with an emphasis on elegance and texture over power and richness. Much more on the pretty end of the spectrum, I don't think this will make old bones, but it's a wonderful drink today. Enjoy bottles over the coming 4-5 years. (JD)  (10/2014)

91 points Wine Spectator

 Generous, focused flavors of spicy plum and wild berry notes are at the core, with firm tannins. Well-proportioned, ending with supple wilted rose and raspberry accents that are clean and persistent. Drink now through 2022. (JL)  (9/2014)

90 points Vinous

 As is often the case, the 2012 Pinot Noir Keefer Ranch Vineyard is one of the more supple, open wines in the range. Dark red cherries, sweet spices, licorice, tobacco and smoke add nuance as this juicy, resonant Pinot shows off its racy, caressing personality. Ideally, readers will want to drink the Keefer over the next few years, while the flavors remain vibrant and punchy. (AG)  (1/2015)

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Price: $114.99
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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.