2012 Rhys "Home Vineyard" San Mateo County Pinot Noir

SKU #1200291 94 points Vinous

 Orange rind, graphite, pine, mint and crushed rocks jump from the glass in the 2012 Pinot Noir Home Vineyard. One of the more vibrant, chiseled wines in the range, the Home will benefit from further time in bottle. The translucent, crystalline finish is a thing of beauty. In this vintage, the Home was done with 100% whole clusters. Quite remarkably, the Home Vineyard lies just 400 yards away from Family Farm, separated by the San Andreas Fault, yet the wines from these two sites are completely different. (AG)  (7/2014)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Coming from Kevin's first estate vineyard that was planted in 1995, the 2012 Pinot Noir Home Vineyard (100% whole cluster) is decidedly fresh and lively, with tangy acidity in its black cherry, currants, pine, sappy underbrush and earthy aromas and flavors. Medium to full-bodied, lively, structured and still backwards, with plenty of polished tannin that build on the mid-palate and finish, this Burgundian lookalike needs short-term cellaring and will have 10-15 years of overall longevity. This site shares similarities to the Family Farm Vineyard, yet the soil here is more decomposed sandstone and clay, and the wines are distinctly different. 93+ (JD)  (4/2015)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Deep red. Powerful scents of red fruit liqueur, Asian spices, violet and woodsmoke are lifted by a stony nuance. In the mouth, vibrant cherry and floral pastille flavors are joined by a building touch of spicecake. Dusty tannins add grip to the extremely long finish, which strongly echoes the floral and spicecake notes. This youthful wine is built to age. (ST)  (5/2014)

92 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 The wood treatment is more obvious though it remains subtle as it allows the notably ripe aromas of plum, dark chocolate, dried flowers and essence of black cherry to shine. There is a sleek mouth feel to the voluminous and beautifully detailed flavors that possess fine mid-palate concentration and really lovely depth and length. The intensity does a slow build from the mid-palate to the beautifully long finale and about the only nit is a discreet hint of warmth. Drink: 2020+  (1/2015)

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Price: $79.99
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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:

Santa Cruz Mountains

- Vineyards dot the valleys and ridges of this coastal AVA just south of San Francisco. Microclimates make it difficult to generalize, and vineyards are frequently separated by acres of forests and meadowlands (not to mention entire towns!), but this is nonetheless known as a cooler-climate zone ideal for pinot noir. Ridge is doubtless the most famous local producer, with its cabernet blend, Monte Bello, named after a Santa Cruz mountain peak. High-quality, low-production chardonnay and some Rhône varietals prosper as well.