Revisiting the 2011 Pinot Noir

Being new to the “family”, I have been anxious to experience the evolution of the wines. In addition to becoming acquainted with the current releases, I find occasion to pour a bit of a past vintage. If you tuned in to our last “Winesday” I got to taste the 2016 Napa Valley Cab and 2011 Atlas Peak Cab, both delicious. I recently got my hands on the 2011 Pinot Noir, our oldest available library Pinot. Stunning! The structure of this varietal is inherently built to age and well crafted wines under the right conditions, can go a good while. Sometimes patience is a virtue. Since we still have some of this great wine available, I wanted to share with you, my impressions on it.

Ruby to slightly garnet rim. The nose takes you straight to Burgundy with earthy aromas of garrigue, mossy soil, fresh ceps, wet stone and wilting violets with a savory grilled rosemary edge. Under the bottle bouquet, aromas of pomegranate, dried cherry, dried currant and cranberry compote with hints of blueberry skins.

Offering a Cotes-de-Nuits savory edge, the palate provides wonderful balance with silky tannins, still-vibrant acidity and luscious flavors of spiced plum, mulberry, dried blueberries, dried cherry and almost a punchy Acai richness. Suggestions of wet river stones and garrigue join the lengthy finish with persistent tension between the acid and tannins. Truly a wine in its peak window with years more ahead.

Try it with roast duck, seared duck breast of duck confit; mushroom pizza or pasta; lamb stew or roast rack of lamb/leg of lamb; grass-fed beef or bison. Pair also with Manchego, Chevre, P’Tit Basque, aged cheddar or Brillat Savarin.

~ Chris Schreiner

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