Benton Lane First Class Pinot Noir 2008 Front Label
Benton Lane First Class Pinot Noir 2008 Front Label

Benton Lane First Class Pinot Noir 2008

  • WS91
  • RP90
750ML / 13.75% ABV
Other Vintages
  • WW91
  • JS91
  • WS90
  • WE90
  • WS92
  • WE90
  • WS93
  • W&S90
  • WS92
  • WS92
  • WS88
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750ML / 13.75% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This deep ruby colored wine exhibits classic aromas of cherry, blackberries and wet earth, with complex underlying flavors of mocha, anise and blueberries. Very ripe, fine tannins and balanced acidity create a rich, velvety texture that leads into an extremely long finish. The First Class pinot noir represents the "best of the best" individual lots from a given year and is produced in small quantities only in vintages of optimal quality.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 91
Wine Spectator
Light and open-textured, a delicate style that offers a hint of caramel weaving through cherry and raspberry fruit, lingering enticingly under a veil of fine tannins on the finish. Drink now through 2018.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The much more limited 2008 Pinot Noir First Class is a selection of the best barrels in the cellar. It displays a more brooding bouquet containing darker fruits (black cherry and plum) along with attractive spice notes. On the palate it is firm, structured, and well balanced. It is likely to be longer lived than the Estate cuvee but no more pleasurable. 90+ points.
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Benton Lane

Benton Lane

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Benton Lane, Oregon
Benton Lane Winery Video
Steve and Carol Girard have been owners of Benton-Lane since 1988. Carol and Steve shared a passionate desire to produce great Pinot Noir but decided their native California was probably not the best place in which to make it. Instead, they headed to Oregon where the cooler climate offered the possibility of producing Pinot Noir with better balance and structure.

After countless months of looking at possible properties, Carol and Steve discovered an old sheep ranch called "Sunnymount" in the southern Willamette Valley. It was immediately apparent Sunnymount held great potential as a vineyard site. The property is in the foothills of the costal mountain range on the west side of the valley with hillsides sloping east by southeast, a perfect orientation for planting Pinot Noir.

Sunnymount straddled the border between Benton and Lane counties with some of the land being in each, and so the name Benton-Lane was born. Carol and Steve purchased the property in 1988 and planting of Pinot Noir commenced in 1989. Benton-Lane’s first vintage was 1992 which was custom produced at another local winery. This process continued until 1997 when the Benton-Lane winery was constructed.

Benton-Lane produced Pinot Noir exclusively until 2003. In 2004, the winery began full-scale commercial production of Pinot Gris from grapes purchased from carefully selected Willamette Valley growers.

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Home of some of the planet’s most amazingly elegant and expressive Pinot noir, the Willamette Valley is a pastoral, mixed landscape of green, bucolic rolling hills, dramatic forestlands and small, independent, friendly wine growers. As a leader in environmental stewardship, the valley has some of the nation’s most protective land use policies, with two-thirds of its vineyards farmed sustainably and over half, organically. While the valley claims a cool, continental climate, and is heavily influenced by the cold, moist winds of the Pacific Ocean, its warm and dry summers allow for the steady, even ripening of Pinot noir.

The potential of Willamette Valley Pinot noir continues to attract the investment of serious growers and winemakers both locally and from abroad, as naturally the finished wines bring accolades from professionals and enthusiasts. With a range of styles from delicate dried cherry, raspberry and hibiscus to stronger notes of truffle, mocha, plum and spice, a fine Willamette Valley Pinot noir is a perfect expression of both character and grace.

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HNYBLWPNF08C_2008 Item# 102883

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