The Donum Estate Russian River Valley Reserve Pinot Noir 2011
Pinot Noir from Russian River, California
A selected fourteen barrels of Dijon 667, which yields deeply scented, earthy, dark fruit and excellent structure. The Reserve combines power with elegance and is a true stand- alone wine that sings in a strong, clear voice.
Connoisseurs' Guide - "The Russian River Reserve heads up these latest releases from one of California's top Pinot Noir producers, and, given the vintage challenges, this is a superb group indeed. Here, volume, depth and richness are all combined with clearly stated red cherry fruit with a hint of berryish sweetness carried brilliantly by the solid, slightly open, supple and lively mouthfeel. Its flavors hold on and on at the end, and if one can spot a bit of late-arriving heat, it will be ameliorated in service with rich foods like duck breasts in a savory wine sauce or a juicy rib roast."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2011 Pinot Noir Reserve boasts the most saturated dark plum/ruby color of these Pinots, along with copious aromas of forest floor, red and black currants and earth. This well-endowed, rich, medium to full-bodied Pinot offers terrific purity, abundant texture and richness, a broad, Cote de Nuits-like, savory, floral and foresty character, and an exceptionally long finish. Enjoy this profound Russian River Pinot over the next 7-10 years. "
Wine Spectator - "A rich, full-blown expression of ripe dark berry flavors, with raspberry, boysenberry, black licorice and subtle floral and spice notes. The texture is both supple and firm, leading to a lingering finish. Drink now through 2023. 343 cases made."
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The Donum Estate Winery
Since The Donum Estate's first release in 2001, Donum winegrower and founder, Anne Moller-Racke has remained committed to growing Pinot Noir based on a Burgundian grand cru model of estate farming. A Carneros grower for over three decades, Anne has worked alongside the industry's foremost authorities, including Andre Tchelistcheff, Dr. Phil Freese and Dr. Paul Skinner. As the caretaker for Donum's three estate vineyards - most notably, the 47 acres planted to heirloom and Dijon clone Pinot Noir and Chardonnay on Donum's 147-acre Carneros rance - her focus is on crafting wines that not only exhibit regional character, but also possess intensity, grace and power. With just a decade under its belt, Donum has secured a reputation as one of California's top producers of cellar-worthy Pinot Noir. View all The Donum Estate 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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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 & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
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