Williams Selyem Hirsch Pinot Noir 2009
Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
Classic Hirsch with aromas of wild blackberries, cassis, cola and truffles bursting out of my glass. The concentrated flavors of wild berries, spice, cardamom and coffee expand throughout the palate. Round brooding tannins coat the palate nicely with a juicy acidity in the finish. The darker fruits and mature tannins from the Pommard block really make this a much more complete wine showing true site specificity.
Wine Enthusiast - "Soft and ripe enough to drink now, after a decent decanting, it shows pure raspberry, blueberry and cherry fruit flavors, subtlely accented with cola and baking spices, and all of it wrapped into thick but smooth tannins. Good as it is, it will gain traction over the next 15 years.
International Wine Cellar - "Bright ruby. Spicy red and dark berries and cherry-cola on the nose, with complicating notes of dried rose, white pepper and fruitcake. Light on its feet but very concentrated, offering powerful red fruit and floral pastille flavors that expand in the mid-palate. Becomes deeper and smokier with air while maintaining its balance and focus. This leads with finesse but there's sneaky power as well. Finishes racy and pure, with an echo of bitter cherry and excellent persistence."
Wine & Spirits - "A selection of three blocks from David Hirsch's far-coast vineyard near Fort Ross, this is made up of three heritage clones: Mt. Eden (block 4B), Pommard (5E) and Swan (6F). Give this time in a decanter and the delicate weave of flavor opens into a peacock's tail of colors and intricate patterns, the vanillin of the oak, the black olive tones of the tannins, the high-toned strawberry and orange-scented fruit all secondary to the refinement of the presentation and the energy that drives it. A joyous young vintage, this will age for a decade or more."
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Williams Selyem Winery
Williams Selyem Winery began as a simple dream of two friends, Ed Selyem and Burt Williams, who pursued weekend winemaking as a hobby in 1979 in a garage in Forestville, California, and made their first commercial vintage in 1981. In less than two decades, Burt and Ed created a cult-status winery of international acclaim. Together they set a new standard for Pinot Noir winemaking in the United States, aligning Sonoma County's Russian River Valley in the firmament of the best winegrowing regions of the world. Today John and Kathe Dyson, who purchased the winery from Burt and Ed in 1998, carry on the passion for Pinot Noir winemaking without compromise. As for the wines... they just keep getting better and better. View all Williams Selyem Winery Wines
About Sonoma CountyView a map of Sonoma County wineriesRelated Links:
Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about a half the amount of wine as her northeasterly neighbor. But Sonoma, with her size, is able to vouch for more diversity within her borders, including sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid back and down home country style. But in wines, they are keeping up with the Joneses, or Napa-ites if you will. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
Notable FactsThe largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
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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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