2016 Lyric by Etude Pinot Noir, USA, California, Santa Barbara, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$16.00USD

This is a very nice value wine from the Etude Winery.  It retails for about $20 (less in some places) and it very good.  Light to medium ruby in color.  The nose has black cherries with slight saline notes.  On the palate, this has juicy cherry fruit.  A slight salinity carries thru.  Nice finish.  It can be easy to dismiss a wine at this price range, but consumed blind among 10 Santa Barbara Pinots, this finished in the middle of the pack.  It probably should be consumed over the next three to five years.  Nice on its own, it would be a nice match with grilled salmon.  

2014 Sea Smoke Pinot Noir Ten, USA, California, Santa Barbara, Santa Rita Hills, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$130.00USD

This is a bigger wine.  Deep ruby/purple in color.  The nose has fresh black cherries.  On the palate, cherries and black cherries.  Lots of depth.  Turns slightly bitter on the finish.  Still drinking youthfully.  This should continue to drink well for the next decade.  It drinks well on its own, and will work with heartier fowl or meat dishes.  

 

2014 Samsara Pinot Noir Las Hermanas, USA, California, Santa Barbara, Santa Rita Hills, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
87
Grade: 
B
Current Price: 
$60.00USD

The Samsara wines in our tasting did not perform well.  I am told that since about 2017, they have new owners and new winemakers, so I look forward to revisiting their wines.  Medium ruby in color.  The nose has cherries with some cinnamon.  On the palate, this has a soft texture.  Cherry candy and red licorice notes.  Not a lot of depth but a glass is tasty.  Shorter finish.  This is drinkable and solid, but no more.  Drink up.  Probably better on its own than with food.  

2014 Siduri Pinot Noir Clos Pepe Vineyard, USA, California, Santa Barbara, Santa Rita Hills, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$50.00USD

Very impressive showing in a recent tasting.  The kind of Pinot that pleased everyone.  Deep ruby in color.  The nose has black cherries, macerated cherries, slight brine.  On the palate, the cherries and black cherries come out.  This is big and bold.  A bit of sour cherries on the finish.  This is drinking well now and should continue for the next five to seven years.  It works well on its own and will work well with roasted fowl.  

2009 Littorai Pinot Noir The Haven Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

For those who dismiss California Pinots as bombastic, this is proof they don't have to be.  Sure, it is kissed with sunshine, but this has a lovely elegance in addition to its power.  Deep ruby in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose has black cherries, cherries, slight plums and spice.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, the black cherries and cherries come thru with a bit of earthiness underneath.  Great balance.  Long finish.  Delicious.  This is in a great place but willl continue to mature for another  five to ten and be good for another ten to fifteen after that.  It will work well w

2009 Domaine René Leclerc Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru les Champeaux, France, Burgundy, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-

From a tremendous, if very ripe, vintage.  Deep ruby in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose has cherries, black cherries, cola and slight earthiness.  This has a great lush texture.  The black cherry fruit comes out on the palate with some cherries and underlying minerality.  Clean.  Nice balance.  Long finish.  Tasted blind, one might think California but on the more elegant side.  Still on the youthful side, this should develop a bit more.  drink over the next ten to fifteen years.  This will work well with roasted foul or slow cooked braised meat dishes.  

2001 Faiveley Latricières-Chambertin, France, Burgundy, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2001
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

This was popped and poured but it took about an hour to blow off some bottle stink and another hour to really get into gear.  It would have been better served to pop the cork and allowed to breathe for a few hours.  Luckily, we had the time to wait.  Ruby in color, clear and bright.  The nose (after a couple hours) is nice with cherries, earthy funk and slight floral notes.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, this has cherries layered with earthiness.  Slightly soft.  Deep.  Nice finish.  This is drinking well now and will not get better.  From a very good if not great vintage.  Drink over the

1985 Mongeard-Mugneret Vougeot 1er Cru Les Cras, France, Burgundy, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1985
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

What a pretty bottle of wine.  Ruby in color, cloudy with slight bricking and dull.  The nose is gorgeous.  Fresh cherries, cherry blossoms, slight mushrooms and woodiness.  On the palate, this is medium bodied.  Very lively.  Fresh cherries with a clean earthiness underneath.  Complex.  Completely mature yet vibrant.  Everything once could hope for from a 35 year old 1er Cru.  At this point it is bottle to bottle on this wine, so drink them if you have them.  It worked well with grilled veggies and rice and beans but would also work well with roasted fowl.

2018 Belle Glos Pinot Noir Clark & Telephone Vineyard, USA, California, Santa Maria Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$35.00USD

This is a huge, dark Pinot Noir.  Lovers of Burgundy should at least be forewarned if not directed away.  That said, to those looking for a bit dark, fruity wine, this is delicious.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black cherries, black raspberries, baking spices and a bit of licorice.  Full bodied.  Juicy texture.  On the palate, juicy black raspberry fruit.  Very primary although it will no doubt develop over the next five to seven years.  Light tannins.  This drinks nicely on its own and would work with bold spicy foods.  Drink now thru 2028.  

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