2016 The Crusher California Pinot Noir

SKU #1371705 91 points Wine Enthusiast

 Fully ripe and rich, this mouthfilling wine oozes black plum and clove aromas, vibrant black-cherry and coriander flavors and is bolstered by firm tannins and a full body. It's big, bold and complex at the same time. *Top 100 Best Buys 2018* (JG)  (5/2018)

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Price: $9.99

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By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/5/2018 | Send Email
An outstanding value in Pinot Noir. After my first sip of this wine I put the bottle in a brown paper bag to pour blind for my colleagues...I just wanted to make sure I wasn't losing it...a $9.99 Pinot Noir...that tastes this good! After pouring it blind for a few folks guesses started coming in...Flowers, Patz & Hall, Failla...everyone was guessing $30-50 Pinot Noirs! My palate wasn't deceiving me...it really was a great bottle of California Pinot for under Ten bucks. Lots of fruit, but not jammy, silky tannins, fresh, juicy, easy drinking...varietally correct! Not much more you could ask for at this price point. And they even pour it at AT&T Park!
Top Value!

By: Keith Mabry | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/22/2018 | Send Email
Let's not kid ourselves - the name says it all. No pretense, just tasty and ripe berry fruit. Is it the most classic? No. That's not what why you drink a wine called "Crusher." This is a juicy overt and purely hedonistic pinot. Perfect for any night of the week or next outdoor party.

By: Kaj Stromer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/22/2018 | Send Email
This wine does not need a long story about its history or pedigree. Instead, all you need to know is that for $10 this is an amazingly delicious bottle of Pinot Noir. Prior to tasting this wine, I would have told you that no such thing existed. Anyone used to drinking quality Pinot Noir will be amazed by the bright red cherry aromatics followed by a lovely mouthfeel that captures the silky elegance of Pinot Noir. So, I’m not asking too many questions. I’m just pulling another cork and pouring another glass.

By: Anthony Russo | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/21/2018 | Send Email
If I grabbed this bottle of pinot for $10 and did not what to expect, I would be more than pleasantly surprised by the quality level. It is juicy, fresh, and contains a mixture of red and dark fruit flavors, all without overwhelming the palate. Glad to have an affordable Pinot that I can confidently recommend to anyone.

By: Stefanie Juelsgaard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/21/2018 | Send Email
I was a little skeptical when I saw a California Pinot Noir for under $10, not super confident it could offer real substance. I could not have been more wrong. The nose is a little bit riper, but the palate if fresh, lean, and really bright. There are very few domestic Pinot Noirs at this price point I feel comfortable giving to customers, simply because California fruit is so expensive, so the wines have to be too. These guys managed to pull off a super tasty, impressive wine that I was excited to find was this good.
Top Value!

By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/21/2018 | Send Email
California Pinot at under $20 has increasingly become something of a rara avis these days. Under $15 rarer still, but under $10?? You may be wondering how, what, and -- is that a typo or something? While I cannot speak to the how, I can tell you that this is juicy, crowd pleasing Pinot framed with some underlying toasty goodness, and no, there is no mistake in the sub $10 price. If it sounds too good to be true, it only is if you're looking for the next Rhys. Otherwise, check this one out!

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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.