Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 9/18/2014
Estancia Pinot Noir 2011
Estancia Pinot Noir 2011
(search item no. 118157)

PRICE ON 9/18/2014: $15.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 86 points
1997 Wine Spectator rating: 85 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The cool fog sweeps in each evening, giving way to warm, sunny days perfect for ripening world-class Pinot Noir. Estancia Pinot Noir displays luscious berry flavors, spice and a rich, supple finish.
My Notes:

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About Estancia:

Estancia, based in Monterey, was founded in 1986. The name Estancia is roughly translated from the Spanish word for "estate," and emphasizes our conviction that the world's best wines capture the essence of their place of origin. At Estancia we control the process from the start—from the trials in our experimental vineyard blocks, to planting, harvesting, fermenting and aging the wines. We've built a winery that allows us to devote the same attention to detail in winemaking that we give to our grapes. We use open-top fermenters and small basket presses for our Pinot Noir and new red-wine fermentation tanks that are fit for the diverse blocks in our Paso Robles vineyards. It is this hands-on crafting of the wines, from grapes to bottle, that result in our superior wine quality.


Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Carneros    California   
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Date Printed: 9/18/2014
La Crema Los Carneros Pinot Noir 2008
La Crema Los Carneros Pinot Noir 2008
(search item no. 114865)
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/18/2014: $37.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The outstanding 2008 Pinot Noir Los Carneros reveals abundant damp earth, beet root vegetable, plum, black cherry and black currant characteristics that offer considerable complexity. Sweet tannins are present in this medium to full-bodied, velvety-textured, irresistible wine.

Los Carneros is the most southern of our Appellation Series Pinot regions. Straddling the Napa / Sonoma County line, the Los Carneros hills roll up from the San Pablo Bay. The unique factor here is wind - a relentless cooling force that charges up the rolling hillsides. Our Los Carneros vineyards are just three miles from the bay, so the constant cooling influence of wind and fog allow the fruit ample time on the vine to develop full, concentrated flavors and velvety texture.

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About La Crema:

Since 1979, La Crema Winery has been a pioneer in producing Burgundian varietals from the cool Sonoma coast. They handcraft their wine, one barrel at a time, at their family-owned estate located in the Russian River Valley. Balance, finesse and great fruit intensity come through in every glass of La Crema wine.

La Crema's location in the Russian River Valley is ideal for producing wines of uncompromising elegance and balance. To achieve this goal, several unique steps take place in getting fruit from the vineyards to the bottle. It begins in the vineyard, where careful canopy management and hand harvesting assure fully ripe, undamaged grapes are brought to the winery. At the winery, Winemaker Melissa Stackhouse uses artisan winemaking techniques to handcraft wines of distinctive flavor, elegance and balance.



Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Other California    California   
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Date Printed: 9/18/2014
Mark West California Pinot Noir 2010
Mark West California Pinot Noir 2010
(search item no. 114125)

PRICE ON 9/18/2014: $13.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Great grapes (where it all starts) and Alex's winemaking talents resulted in a wine that enjoys enticing aromas of dark berries including boysenberries and raspberries. There's a sweet entry of brown sugar and molasses followed by a bit of orange zest and coriander. The core of the wine tastes of fleshy plums with a spicy note of cardamom from oak aging. Reminiscent of our early Edna Valley Pinots, this medium weight wine is silky smooth but with a solid fruit center.

Our favorite food pairings include marguerita pizza, sweet potato fries and Thanksgiving with all of the fixings.

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About Mark West:

At Mark West Winery our goal is to craft wines that consistently deliver enticing aromatics, a rich supple mouth feel, and classical varietal characteristics. The wines pair easily with food or for drinking alone. Our goal is to combine outstanding value and style in every wine we produce.


Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 9/18/2014
Paraiso Vineyards West Perrace Pinot Noir 2006
Paraiso Vineyards West Perrace Pinot Noir 2006
(search item no. 101409)
boutique wine

Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 88 points
PRICE ON 9/18/2014: $24.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Only 10 barrels of our rarest Pinot, produced from the estate's best blocks.
My Notes:

About Paraiso Vineyards:

Rich and Claudia Smith arrived in Monterey County in 1973, their children and belongings in the car. Fresh out of college, the young couple was searching for the perfect locale to try out their newly minted U.C. Davis training. Thirty years later, the Smith Family is one of the most influential and respected growers on California’s Central Coast – the Smith Family has been instrumental in Monterey’s rise to prominence as a world-class winegrowing region. Today Rich and his son Jason oversee 3,000 acres of grapes throughout Monterey County, providing fruit to Beringer, Hess, Mondavi, Kendall-Jackson, and many others. In 1988, the Smiths began producing very limited, much sought-after wines under their own P.S.V. banner...

The rugged Santa Lucia Mountains frame Monterey County’s fertile Salinas Valley on the west, separating it from the Pacific Ocean. The famed Santa Lucia Highlands appellation encompasses a series of small alluvial terraces on the lower slopes of the range – perfect for boutique growers of world-class Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Syrah. The vines of this unique hillside district enjoy cooling ocean breezes and fog from nearby Monterey Bay. The resulting slow, gentle ripening contributes to California’s longest “hang time” – creating exceptional intensity, complexity, and balance in the grapes. Planted in 1973, the sixteen small vineyard plots of Paraiso Springs occupy unique microclimatic niches on the 400-acre estate. With varying elevations and soils, each plot boasts its own terroir, its own special sense of place…

The Smith Family has earned its reputation through constant experimentation and innovation, both in the vineyard and in the cellar. Combining time-honored techniques with these latest advances, Rich and Claudia’s son-in-law, winemaker David Fleming, practices his art – hands-on, barrel-by-barrel. The limited release wines of P.S.V. are among the most awarded in the state, eagerly sought after by collectors across the country…



Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Other California    California   
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Date Printed: 9/18/2014
Joel Gott Blend No. 815 Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Joel Gott Blend No. 815 Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
(search item no. 110881)

PRICE ON 9/18/2014: $19.99

Winemaker's Notes:

The Joel Gott 2009 815 Cabernet Sauvignon offers engaging and layered aromas of blackberry and dark plum with hints of spice, cedar and vanilla. The polished tannins and velvet texture lead to an elegant and long finish.

100% Cabernet Sauvignon

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About Joel Gott:

Napa scion Joel Gott was born to make wine. His grandfather was winemaker and president of Inglenook in the 1960s and 1970s while his father, Cary Gott, is the founder of Montevina and continues to consult for wineries such as D.R. Stephens.

In addition to Joel's uncanny blending ability, he has privileged access to many of the best and as yet undiscovered fruit sources in the Napa Valley. Joel Gott wines are therefore remarkable values, offering gobs of classic California fruit, good structure and excellent balance.

Of course, Joel is also the proud proprietor of Gott's Roadside, Napa Valley's red hot retro-chic "hamburger joint" on Highway 29, and most recently, in San Francisco as well. Robert Parker once proclaimed a meal at Taylor's one of the finest meals of the year in the Wine Advocate!



Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Russian River    California   
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Date Printed: 9/18/2014
Rodney Strong Estate Pinot Noir 2010
Rodney Strong Estate Pinot Noir 2010
(search item no. 114073)
green wine

Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/18/2014: $21.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2011 PinotReport rating: 91 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2007 Wine & Spirits rating: 88 points
2006 The Wine News rating: 90 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Supple in texture, with rose petal and red fruit aromas, this lively, medium bodied wine is aged entirely in small French oak barrels, which adds a subtle, toasty vanilla character and a hint of spice.
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About Rodney Strong Vineyards:

Founded by wine industry pioneer, Rod Strong, in 1959, Rodney Strong Vineyards is now owned by the Kleins, a farming-based family that prides itself on land stewardship and a relentless push for superior wine quality from Sonoma County. After purchasing the company in 1989, Tom Klein began the endeavor that today brings together excellent vineyards, the industry's finest winemaking equipment, and exceptional talent. The winery farms and sources grapes from vineyards throughout Sonoma County, focusing on Alexander Valley, Russian River Valley and Chalk Hill. Rodney Strong Vineyards is best known for its estate-bottled and vinyeard-designated wines, and is also recognized for their sustainable and Fish Friendly Farming, dedication to solar energy production and coming carbon neutral in 2009.


Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Other California    California   
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Date Printed: 9/18/2014
Meiomi Pinot Noir 2011
Meiomi Pinot Noir 2011
(search item no. 117974)
screw cap wine
has fluid
has fluid 360

Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 9/18/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 88 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Meiomi (May-oh-mee) is a Pinot Noir that gets its fruit from the most noteworthy coastal areas in California. The wine is crafted, lush, balanced and luxurious. Three of the California's most sought after coastal growing regions brilliantly meld together in this deeply flavored, stylish and truly balanced Pinot Noir; at its most fundamental core, it is an approachable, food friendly wine with a style and place all its own.
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About Meiomi:

The name Meiomi means "coast" in the language of the native, coastal dwelling Wappo and Yuki tribes, and best pays tribute to and symbolizes the origin of this Pinot Noir. Meiomi is a high style Pinot Noir that is shaped, more than anything else, by the fruit sources that lay the foundation of the blend. A pure bred enjoyment wine, built to accommodate any pairing from food to friends. Unifying California’s most noteworthy coastal areas opens the door for a dynamic and opulent wine that is ready to enjoy whenever you are.

Joseph J. Wagner is a fifth-generation winemaker from a family with farming and winemaking roots in the Napa Valley since the 1880's. In his youth, he worked many spring and summer days in the vineyard and cellar of Caymus, learning the basics from pulling leaves, to dragging hoses. Then he began to focus his efforts on what was to become his passion and career in the wine business. He is the owner of Belle Glos and Meiomi wines and has been overseeing vineyard operations and winemaking since 2002. Joseph has a perpetual goal of crafting Pinot Noirs that exude their origins and represent the best of their class in any vintage. Along with his passion for Pinot Noir, he continues his role at Caymus in viticulture and winemaking alongside his father, Chuck. When not at work, he spends time with his wife and 5 children constantly grooming the next generation in farming philosophy and practices, winemaking and the enjoyment of nature's bounty and the outdoors.