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Williams Selyem Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2004

Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
  • W&S91
  • WE90
  • WS90
13.8% ABV
  • RP90
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13.8% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Rich and dark in color, the nose of this wine exhibits aromas of wild berries, pomegranates, sandalwood, cardamom and toasted vanilla beans. The mouth is filled with flavors of raspberries, truffles, dried cranberries, roasted nuts, Asian spices and mocha. The Coastal acidity and concentrated tannins accentuate the ripe, wild berry flavors and linger into the long finish.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
W&S 91
Wine & Spirits
Light scents of cherry and red apple meld with a saline character, like sea wrack on the beach in Jenner. The flavors contrast sweetness and freshness with a cool cranberry tone. Serve it with salt cod brandade.
WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
Right off the bat you can taste the acidity in this wine, which is brighter and crisper than, say, the winery’s Russian River Pinot. The tartness lifts the black cherry, cherry and raspberry flavors, heightening their impact through the long, spicy finish. Still, it’s a wine for early drinking.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Trim, compact and delicate, with detailed cherry, mineral, sage, herb and plum flavors shaded by a hint of toasty oak on the finish. Drink now through 2010.
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Williams Selyem

Williams Selyem Winery

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Williams Selyem Winery , Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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Williams Selyem Winery began as a simple dream of two friends, Ed Selyem and Burt Williams, who pursued weekend winemaking as a hobby in 1979 in a garage in Forestville, California, and made their first commercial vintage in 1981. In less than two decades, Burt and Ed created a cult-status winery of international acclaim. Together they set a new standard for Pinot Noir winemaking in the United States, aligning Sonoma County's Russian River Valley in the firmament of the best winegrowing regions of the world. Today John and Kathe Dyson, who purchased the winery from Burt and Ed in 1998, carry on the passion for Pinot Noir winemaking without compromise. As for the wines... they just keep getting better and better.

Sonoma Coast

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A vast appellation covering Sonoma County’s Pacific coastline, the Sonoma Coast AVA runs from the San Pablo Bay to the Mendocino County border. The region can actually be divided into two sections—the “true” Sonoma Coast, marked by high rainfall, marine soils, cool temperatures, and saline ocean breezes, from which one can actually see the ocean—and the warmer, drier vineyards further inland, creating a diversity of wine styles. Contained within the appellation is the much smaller and more focused Fort Ross-Seaview AVA.

Sonoma Coast is highly regarded for elegant Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and, increasingly, cool-climate Syrah, with high acidity, moderate alcohol, firm tannin, and fruit that is rarely overripe. One of the most favorable sites within the region is the Petaluma Gap, where a break in the coastal mountain range allows Pacific winds and fog to funnel through and cool the vineyards.

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.

KBF145033_2004 Item# 145033