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Andrew Rich Cuvee B Pinot Noir 2008

Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
  • W&S91
  • WS90
13.5% ABV
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13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

With its darker color and deep aromas of graphite, crushed red and black berries, and a hint of wild herbs, the Cuvée announces itself as a wine that is altogether more "serious" than the Prelude. (And for those who have been following this wine for the last 10 vintages, it should be noted that with this vintage the B has been promoted: it is no longer our "entry-level" Pinot, though in order to attain an elevated rank it was necessary to bottle much less than previously—about one-half of normal.) In the mouth the wine seems more savory than overtly fruity, with a round, sweet, rich mid-palate. It is full and lush with any excess weight (a hallmark of 2008). There is excellent length here, with well-integrated tannins and vibrant acidity to keep the wine focused and fresh. Delicious now, this will go five years at least.

Critical Acclaim

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W&S 91
Wine & Spirits
Juicy and expressive, this is a classical Willamette Valley pinot with broad scents of wild strawberries and briar. The wine is high-toned and fine, makred by a sinewy texture, firm tannins and a finish that lasts. Should pair beautifully with a pork chop.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Crisp tannins surround a supple core of sassafras-accented black cherry, plum and mineral flavors, which remain deft and agile as the finish persists impressively. Best from 2012 through 2018. 530 cases made.
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Andrew Rich

Andrew Rich

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Andrew Rich, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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Since 1995, Andrew Rich has been sourcing fruit from some of Oregon and Washington’s best vineyards to craft wines of character, authenticity, and balance. While it has been said that Andrew has never met a grape variety that he didn’t like, in fact the focus is squarely on Pinot noir from the Willamette Valley and Rhône varietals from the Columbia Valley. Still, that hasn’t prevented him from championing a single-vineyard Willamette Sauvignon blanc or creating a stunning ice wine from 35-year-old Gewürztraminer vines in the Columbia Gorge.

Willamette Valley

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One of Pinot Noir’s most successful New World outposts, the Willamette Valley is the largest and most important AVA in Oregon. With a Mediterranean climate moderated by a Pacific Ocean influence, it is perfect for cool-climate viticulture—warm and dry summers allow for steady, even ripening, and frost is rarely a risk during spring and winter.

Mountain ranges bordering three sides of the valley, particularly the Chehalem Mountains, provide the option for higher-elevation, cooler vineyard sites. The three prominent soil types here create significant differences in wine styles between vineyards and sub-AVAs. The iron-rich, basalt-based Jory volcanic soils found commonly in the Dundee Hills are rich in clay and hold water well; the chalky, sedimentary soils of Ribbon Ridge, Yamhill-Carlton and McMinnville encourage complex root systems as vines struggle to search for water and minerals. Silty, loess soils are found in the Chehalem Mountains.

Pinot Noir

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One of the most finicky yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is a labor of love for many. However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. In fact, it is the only red variety permitted in Burgundy. Highly reflective of its terroir, Pinot Noir prefers calcareous soils and a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality and demands a lot of attention in the vineyard and winery. It retains even more glory as an important component of Champagne as well as on its own in France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions. This sensational grape enjoys immense international success, most notably growing in Oregon, California and New Zealand with smaller amounts in Chile, Germany (as Spätburgunder) and Italy (as Pinot Nero).

In the Glass

Pinot Noir is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry and cherry with some heftier styles delving into the red or purple plum and in the other direction, red or orange citrus. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and a lively acidity. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount) it can develop hauntingly alluring characteristics of fresh earth, savory spice, dried fruit and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon and tuna but its mild mannered tannins give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry: chicken, quail and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, Pinot noir has proven it isn’t afraid of beef. California examples work splendidly well with barbecue and Pinot Noir is also vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

For administrative purposes, the region of Beaujolais is often included in Burgundy. But it is extremely different in terms of topography, soil and climate, and the important red grape here is ultimately Gamay. Truth be told, there is a tiny amount of Gamay sprinkled around the outlying parts of Burgundy (mainly in Maconnais) but it isn’t allowed with any great significance and certainly not in any Villages or Cru level wines.

NWWANDRICHPINOT_2008 Item# 108265