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Roco Private Stash Pinot Noir 2012

Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
  • WS93
  • RP90
  • WE90
14% ABV
  • WS93
  • WE91
  • WS92
  • WS91
  • WE91
  • WS94
  • RP93
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14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Very dark crimson red color. Imagine late ripened blackberry juice with a pinch of boysenberry and spice in the aromatics. Elegance and power are balanced on a razor's edge here. Ripe black cherry and boysenberry flavors dance on a bed of gravelly tannins and lively mineral acidity. Remembrances of tilled earth and feral black cherry fruit go on and on. Spice-driven center scattered with ground black pepper, crushed red pepper, cinnamon stick, and a touch of tea. Big beautiful mouth feel. This lady is strutting and shimmering her way across your taste buds. Refined and well adjusted she makes you sigh, "yes."

Critical Acclaim

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WS 93
Wine Spectator
Polished, sleek and expressive, open-textured and almost plush, featuring black cherry and red plum flavors shaded with hints of peach and spice. Comes together harmoniously on the long finish. Drink now through 2022.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2012 Pinot Noir Private Stash is made by Rollin Soles and his better half (according to Rollin, she has a much better palate). This comes from a field selection of 777 propagated by Rollin with 667. It has a "rockier" bouquet, more stones littered about the aromatics - granite and flint infusing the fruit that is a tad darker and broodier than the Wits' End. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy red berry fruit, a lovely saline character coming through, fine tension here with raspberry and cranberry fruit interlaced with minerals defining the finish. You could broach this now, or I would prefer to leave it in bottle for 2 or 3 years because it will repay cellaring.
Rating: 90+
WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
From the Wits' End estate vineyard's best lots, this offers a complex fruit mix running from orange and pineapple into raspberry and cherry. A suggestion of Dr Pepper soda is in play also, and the wine shines with excellent texture and freshness.
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Roco, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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Rollin and Corby Soles planted their small Wits' End Vineyard, located on the southwest slope of the Chehalem Mountains, in 2001. Two years later they produced their first vintage, four barrels of the 2003 Private Stash Pinot Noir. They were so delighted with the wine that they decided to produce two separate ROCO Pinot Noirs each vintage: the Private Stash and Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. Rollin brings more than twenty years of Oregon winemaking experience, a passion for Pinot Noir and insistence on the highest winemaking standards to this private family venture.

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 difficult yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is commonly referred to by winemakers as the “heartbreak grape.” However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. More reflective than most varieties of the land on which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality, and demands care in the vineyard and lots of attention in the winery. It is an important component of Champagne and the only variety permitted in red Burgundy. Pinot Noir enjoys immense popularity internationally, most notably in Oregon, California, and New Zealand.

In the Glass

Pinot Noir Is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry, and cherry. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and lively acidity. It ranges in body from very light to the heavier side of medium, typically landing somewhere in the middle—giving it extensive possibilities for food pairing. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount), it can develop hauntingly beautiful characteristics of fresh earth, autumn leaves, and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon, ocean trout, and tuna. Its mild mannered tannins don’t fight with spicy food, and give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry—chicken, quail, and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, it can even match with heavier fare. Pinot Noir is also very vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

Pinot Noir is dangerously drinkable, highly addictive, and has a bad habit of emptying the wallet. Look for affordable but still delicious examples from Germany (as Spätburgunder), Italy (as Pinot Nero), Chile, New Zealand, and France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions.

EPC27300_2012 Item# 147071