2017 Hartford Court Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

SKU #1422200 95 points Jeb Dunnuck

 A crazy good value, the 2017 Pinot Noir Russian River Valley is the appellation release from this team, and it comes from all of the estate vineyards across the Green Valley, Laguna Ridge, and Sebastopol regions. Complex notes of strawberries, cranberries, violets, pine forest, and flowers all flow to a medium-bodied Pinot Noir that has a kiss of salinity and marine notes, ripe tannins, and a great finish. This beautiful wine competes with wines costing 2-3 times the price. Maturity: 2019-2027  (6/2019)

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Price: $24.95

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By: Neal Fischer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/16/2019 | Send Email
Our recent trip to Hartford Court really opened my eyes to their Chardonnays and their Pinot Noirs, converting me into a big fan of their wines. This 2017 Pinot is explosively aromatic with bold spices, nice greenery, and Bing cherry. The palate displays dusty fruit, an exceptional tannin/acid balance, then it all comes together with a spicy and biting finish. This is a fun and tasty wine.

By: Stefanie Juelsgaard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/11/2019 | Send Email
I was really impressed by this bottle. Even though Russian River is traditionally one of the cooler climate growing sights in Northern California, producers have been making riper and fatter wines lately. Not so with Hartford Court. This wine is very fresh and pretty with a medium weight palate and great expression of fruit. I think the understated nature of the label often sees this wine overlooked when compared to some of the garish cartoon labels that might capture attention these days, but luckily the nature of this wine speaks for itself. I will definitely be adding this one to the top of my list for my recommended Russian River Valley Pinot Noirs.

By: Muriel Sarik | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/10/2019 | Send Email
This a pretty Pinot. Noir. It's a medium body wine so no jammy fruit here. It's balanced, has good acid and the fruit has an elegant touch. On the nose it has some savory notes. This kind of Pinot, at this price, doesn't come around very often. Get it will in stock!

By: Miles Philippe | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/10/2019 | Send Email
This Pinot Noir has lots of lovely variations on rich cherries and raspberries. Add in a luscious texture, fine tannins, and a slight hint of freshly tilled earth, and you have a Pinot Noir that is one of my gold standards for the Russian River Valley! These guys produce beautiful wines ever year, so I'm always happy to enjoy any of their bottles.

By: Jeffrey Markavage | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/25/2019 | Send Email
Wow indeed! This is a classic example of the effusive aromatics found in many high-end Russian River Valley Pinot’s. Hartford’s 2017 Pinot delivers clean, fresh and primary fruit all wonderfully balanced with lively acidity. The nose is full of plum, lavender, cola, and brambly undertones. I can safely say that this wine is drinking as good or better than anything twice the price.

By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/21/2019 | Send Email
Wow! This new release from Hartford Court is just off the hook. It tastes just like one of their high-end single vineyard releases but at less than half the price! Explosive aromatics of bing cherry, sandalwood, clove and warm earth. For me a perfect, benchmark expression of the Russian River Valley Pinot Noir. The palate is highly polished, pure fruited and silky soft. Waves of ripe lush fruit ebb across the palate. The finish is lifted with exotic Asian spices, judicious French oak and heightened bright acidity. So pure and well well made. It's stunning that Hartford Court can put out wines of this caliber at this price point.
Top Value!

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Additional Information:


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:

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 Gewürztraminer and Riesling can also be successful, and sparkling wine production has a long history in the area.
Alcohol Content (%): 15