2012 Pahlmeyer Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

SKU #1192613 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The dense ruby/purple-tinged 2012 Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast reveals copious notes of brambleberries and mountain berries, forest floor, spring flowers and spice. Medium to full-bodied with silky tannins as well as a fleshy, succulent texture, good purity, and the oak pushed to the background, it should drink beautifully for 10-12 years. Bottled unfined and unfiltered, it was sourced from the Halberg and Wayfarer vineyards. (RP)  (12/2014)

94 points Vinous

 The 2012 Pinot Noir is drop-dead gorgeous. Dark red cherry, plum, stone fruit, menthol, cloves and spices are all woven together in a layered, sumptuous wine bursting with class and balance. This is a striking wine in every way. The 2012 is the first vintage made by new winemaker Bibiana Gonzalez-Rave, and it is fabulous. Gonzalez-Rave aged the 2012 in Francois Freres barrels, 85% new. Stylistically, the Pahlmeyer Pinot is a littler juicier and more textured than the wines Gonzalez-Rave is making at Wayfarer. She has done an equally fabulous job here. What a beautiful wine this is. (AG)  (2/2014)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good bright dark red with ruby highlights. Very ripe, almost jammy aromas of strawberry and raspberry are leavened by a note of pungent cranberry. Sappy and fruit-driven, with lovely ripe acidity for the vintage. Cranberry and pomegranate flavors are nicely framed by a positive herbal edge. Fresh acids and firm tannins accentuate and draw out the wine's fruit on the back end. (ST)  (5/2014)

91 points Wine Spectator

 A strong, rich mocha-woody frame wraps around the extracted dark berry flavors in this version, showing some tannic muscle. Within that mix is a seam of elegance and finesse that should only become more prominent with time. Drink now through 2023. (JL)  (9/2014)

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Price: $69.99
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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:

Sonoma County

- Second in fame only to Napa, this "other" valley offers just about every climate and topography imaginable. From its cool and fog-enshrouded coastal regions on the far west, to the sprawling Alexander Valley on the boarder of Napa and the many little dips and peaks in between, Sonoma has been a vital wine-grape-growing region since the mid 1800s. Important sub-AVAs include Chalk Hill (known for chardonnay and sauvignon blanc), Dry Creek Valley (where zin is king) Knights Valley (largely cabernet land), Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast (both celebrated pinot and chardonnay zones).
Alcohol Content (%): 14.9