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Rex Hill Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2009

Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
  • WS93
  • WE90
13.5% ABV
  • WS91
  • JS91
  • TP91
  • WS91
  • JS91
  • RP90
  • WS90
  • WS92
  • TP91
  • WE91
  • WW90
  • WS90
  • WE90
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13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

#38 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2011

The 2009 Rex Hill Willamette Valley Pinot Noir is a classic example of Oregon Pinot Noir from a vintage that gave us intense fruit and intense flavors. Initial perfumed aromatics redolent of violets and roses, black currants, blueberries, black raspberries and wild strawberries are joined by suggestions of tobacco leaf, clean earth, dried fruit, smoke and spice as the wine opens. Some whole-cluster fermentation contributes dark fruit, tea and savory aromatic characteristics. The attack is rich with beautifully ripe tannins and flavors of red fruits and the blue fruits which are a hallmark of the vintage. The lithe mid-palate finds additional complexity with a strong, lingering finish that includes minerality, graphite and spices.

This wine has the intensity, structure and concentration to age and become more complex over the next 15 to 20 years.

100% Pinot Noir

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 93
Wine Spectator
Focused, satiny and elegant, with a powerful thrust behind the pure currant and boysenberry flavors, shaded with touches of talcum and cream as the finish expands. Drink now through 2019.
WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
Rex Hill makes a wine assortment of Pinots; this sports the black label and is widely available and fruit forward. It's loaded with raspberry and cherry flavors and dusted with a bit of clean earth. There is a typical (for Oregon) streak of Dr. Pepper flavor as well. Overall, a nice bottle for immediate enjoyment.
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Rex Hill

Rex Hill

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Rex Hill, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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Rex Hill has been making elegant Pinot Noir for 30 years in Oregon's Willamette Valley. The landmark winery is located at the gateway to Oregon's wine country and welcomes visitors daily to their historic tasting room. Estate vineyards, including the crown jewel, Jacob Hart Vineyard, are farmed to Biodynamic tenets and the winery itself is L.I.V.E. certified. Now owned by the families at A to Z Winewords, the Rex Hill legacy of superior Pinot noir continues. The group brings combined Oregon winemaking experience that spans more than two decades and three continents, as well as high energy, commitment and love of Oregon Pinot Noir.

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.

CNC105061_2009 Item# 110939