Emeritus Hallberg Ranch Pinot Noir 2011
Pinot Noir from Russian River, California
#26 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2014
The 2011 vintage provided a rare occasion in California to make a wine elegant in style, more delicate, more fragrant and more feminine in nature than usual. This is a joyful wine that retains its freshness yet remains reserved. It is lively with vibrant acidity that carries red fruit aromas of strawberry and raspberry. This is a very special vintage for us—the year dry farming finally fulfilled its promise.
Wine Spectator - "Impressive, offering richness, vibrancy and subtle charm, marked by snappy blackberry, red berry, spice, sage and underbrush notes. Ends with a minerally edge that holds the flavors."
The philosophy of Emeritus Vineyards is influenced by our founding winemaker, McDonald "Don" Blackburn. Don, born in Virginia, studied and worked in Burgundy for many years before returning to America. He believed that when Pinot Noir achieves its highest expression, there is no wine that can compare with it. Don observed that, historically, a disproportionately high number of the greatest wines have been Pinot Noir.
To achieve this distinction, the wine starts in the vineyard. The right combination of soil and climate is crucial to the vineyard’s expression of its terroir in the wine.
Emeritus wines reflect the character of the highly desirable Goldridge soils and the personality of the strong maritime influence. The style of Emeritus Pinot Noir is best described as one of elegance, balance, and—especially—charm. View all Emeritus Wines
About Russian RiverView a map of Russian River wineries
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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1 rating, 1 with reviewRon Blachman - Berkeley, CA58/11/2014
The cork is best quality making a good first impression, the color is medium ruby with a bit of what the French call "a robe"; medium to full bodied, moderately leggy, very clean appearance. The nose is medium sized with hints of maraschino cherry or grenadine atop deep, dark cherry tones, there's some clean vanilla from the oak and some floral hints, peonies to me. Not big but deeply attractive. The balance is Burgundian with ample, bright acid atop just enough fruit. There's tannin to age a while and the alcohol is not noticeable! Mouth filling with a pretty good finish. Compare to premium Nuites St. George! Brilliant but it wants a while to mature and let the tartness settle down and the tannins to soften. I'll be trying my next bottle about 2018. Not quite great but darn close!Related ProductsMacMurray Ranch 2011 Russian River Valley Reserve Pinot Noir offers elegant flavors of cherry, pomegranate, lavender and spice. A blend ...
- Smooth & Supple
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.
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