DuMOL Finn Pinot Noir 2009
Pinot Noir from Russian River, California
Unsurprisingly this is DuMOL's wine of the vintage and one of the finest two or three wines they've ever bottled (the winemaker, Andy Smith, suspects the finest, but it's a bit early for such pronouncements). There is a level of complexity, integration and effortless harmony present that is often declared but rarely truly found. It's undeniably a powerful mouthful of Russian River Pinot Noir but it never strays to the overdone or awkward, remaining subtle, elegant and restrained at all times. There's a good deal of concentration and volume to the wine and the mid palate really expands and flows but there's always acidity and tannin present to rein it in and provide clarity and authority of flavor. It's the level of aromatic complexity that really drives the wine, providing its thrust and persistence, so that you always feel there's more coming - another level of complexity and volume. And it's the combination of these multiple non-fruit aromatic nuances – game, leather, lavender, nutmeg, juniper, pepper, menthol, dried herb – that add all the detail and extra dimension.
It's most similar to the 2002 Finn bottling which has become majestic in its maturity and one would anticipate this bottling to age gracefully for at least a decade. As with all great wines, there's a naturally limited supply, so carefully select the occasion to open this treasure.
International Wine Cellar - "Bright purple. An explosively perfumed bouquet evokes candied dark berries, incense and fresh flowers, with vanilla and star anise accents building with air. Stains the palate with sweet black raspberry and floral pastille flavors. This gained weight and power with air, blending richness and vivacity smoothly. Finishes with outstanding clarity, energy and floral persistence."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2009 Pinot Noir Finn wraps around the palate with waves of dark red fruit. This is another plush, deep wine endowed with tremendous depth and sheer textural richness. Dark black cherries, flowers, spices and mint are layered in this effortless, totally gracious Pinot. The dark, sensual style is very inviting. The Finn is made from the best block in the Estate vineyard and another plot in Occidental Road. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2021."
Connoisseurs' Guide - "It is easy to make the case that this one is the ripest and most full-bodied of the DuMOL lot, but, once again, the wine is not near to being over-the-top or outsized, and its ripeness never pushes fruit from center stage. Supple and fleshy with a feel of substance and very rich in sweet oak, it is the kind of Pinot that wants drinking with savory, slowly braised dishes such as Boeuf Bourguignon, and, of the bunch, it is the one we would chose to drink first."
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DuMOL's 25 acre sustainably farmed Estate Vineyard is located on an undulating east-facing slope of one of the appellation's famous ridgelines. From this classic site and in tandem with some of the coastal area's finest growers, DuMOL crafts wines that fully capture the aromatics, flavors and textures that exemplify their vineyard sites and varietals character in the purest and most precise form. View all DuMOL Wines
About Russian River
The Russian River Valley is named as such due to its proximity to the Russian River, the river itself named for the Russian fur traders who came down from Alaska in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The Russian River is agricultural land. While there is a focus on wine, beyond the vineyards are many small, family-owned farms cultivating everything from cattle to Christmas trees.
Notable FactsThe proximity of this cool river and the rolling fogs from the Pacific Ocean make the area amenable to cool-climate grapes like Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. In fact, the region is quite known for its full-bodied, yet elegant Pinot Noir, as well as their ripe, yet lean Chardonnays. Within Russian River Valley lie the smaller appellations of Chalk Hill and Green Valley. Chalk Hill is the warmer of the two and furthest from the ocean, while Green Valley is cooler and closer to the water.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.