Ratings & Reviews
We think all of our wines taste great. It’s nice to know that we’re not alone.
2014 Soberanes Vineyard Pinot Noir, Santa Lucia Highlands
93 Points: Hearty sagebrush, rust and dust meet with dried Montgomery cherry and tart pomegranate aromas on the nose of this bottling from a Healdsburg-based producer. It’s luscious on the palate with ripe plum fruit and tons of baking spice, from cinnamon to clove cream, nutmeg and vanilla. – M.K. (3/1/17)
2014 Sangiacomo Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
93 Points: Earthy and just the slightest touch reduced, this is a feral, juicy and intriguing wine from the well-known site, complex and medium to almost light-bodied in texture and approach. Cherry and pomegranate compote meet cardamom baking spices to suggest warmth and comfort in a glass. – V.B. (9/1/16)
2014 Gap’s Crown Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
92 Points: Tightly coiled in fruit and oak, this is a young yet vibrantly lush, plush and juicy wine.It’s ready to expand on the palate as it opens to reveal exotic baking spice, textured velvety softness and swathes of black cherry and pomegranate. Medium bodied and exuberant, it’ll drink well with food. —V.B. (9/1/16)
2014 Torrey Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley
2015 Rose of Pinot Noir, Sonoma County
90 Points: This was made from a saignée after a full-day’s skin contact, resulting in a sultry, soulful, tiny-production wine that’s refreshing and fruity in orange and lime, dry and completely in balance. —V.B. (9/1/16)
2013 Soberanes Vineyard Pinot Noir, Santa Lucia Highlands
93 Points & Editor’s Choice: Tight cranberry, pomegranate, hibiscus and black raspberry share the nose with cedar, gravel and prominent sagebrush on this bottling by the Healdsburg-based winery. There’s an elegant array of herbs on the palate, bay leaf to oregano, as well as earthy iron tones, all set against a zesty, barely ripe raspberry-juice frame. —M.K. (4/1/16)
2013 Rocky Ridge Vineyard Zinfandel, Rockpile
91 Points: This is a high-acid, minerality-driven wine from the wilds of Rockpile. Soft and integrated in terms of oak and tannin, it also possesses a savage touch of grip, a nod to its mountainous heritage and the perils and pleasures of a warm year. Black cherry and a vibrant squeeze of citrus stand out on the palate, providing juiciness and balance. —V.B. (4/1/16)
2013 Gap’s Crown Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
91 Points & Cellar Selection: Smooth and juicy in red fruit with an edge of more savory cranberry, this wine from a great vineyard source rises to its occasion and to its site, offering high acidity, medium weight, and a lingering, nearly spicy finish. It’s enjoyable now but should show well through 2018. —V.B. (8/1/15)
2013 Torrey Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley
90 Points: This wine intoxicates aromatically in wild cherry and strawberry before entering into an entirely different direction of feral earth. Softly smooth on the palate, it’s enjoyable now and an interesting taste experience, with an unfussy finish. —V.B. (7/1/15)
2012 Gap’s Crown Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
90 Points & Cellar Selection: This is one tight young Pinot Noir. You take the first sip, and the acidity hits you, then the tannins, and finally the fruit, which is ripe and vast in raspberries and strawberries. Oak adds smoky caramel to this parfait. Give it until 2018 or 2019, when it should hit its peak.. —S.H. (7/1/14)
2011 Gap’s Crown Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
92 Points: So deliciously forward in raspberries and cherries, you’re tempted to drink it now, and that’s fine. You can. But the wine is balanced enough in acids and tannins that it will gain traction over six years or so. The vineyard is a great one, source over the years to high-scoring Pinots from MacPhail, Fulcrum, Expression 38 and others. —S.H. (10/1/13)
89 Points: Bright, with wild strawberry and cranberry flavors that are fresh and aromatic, showing details of dried lavender, fresh earth and Earl Grey tea. The tannins firm up on the finish but avoid becoming overtly dry. Drink now through 2018. —M.W. (9/30/13)
2011 Caritas Cuvee Pinot Noir, Anderson Valley
91 Points: Light in color this is a delicious Pinot Noir, woodsy and invoking faint red cherry aromas and flavors laced in herb. Softly textured and silky, enjoy on its own or with a roast chicken dripping in rosemary and butter. —V.B. (10/1/13)
2010 Deer Meadows Vineyard Pinot Noir, Anderson Valley – Sold Out!
93 Points. This formidable pinot grows on a hillside at 1,000 feet farmed by Rich Savoy. The fruit has the black density of pomegranate with red glints of strawberry and rhubarb to brighten it. It’s a powerful wine, rich and pungent, lasting on the brisk feel of winds off the Pacific. If you serve it now, decant it for roast venison or other game.
90 Points & Cellar Selection: There’s a simple directness to this wine. But, the flavors are delicious, consisting of ripe cherries and pomegranates, with a seemingly fruity sweetness that belies the dry finish. There’s also plenty of tart acidity and tannins. All of the parts, including the oak, haven’t come together, so give it a 3-4 years in the cellar. -S.H. (8/1/2012)
Good+. From a vineyard that sits 1,600 feet above the valley floor, farmed by Rich Savoy. Calera (20%), 777 (50%) and 115 (30%) clones are co-fermented. Aged 10 months in 50% new Francois Frères French oak barrels. · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. I love the heady aromas of raspberries, strawberries, sandalwood and spice. Wood-kissed dark raspberry flavor on a lighter, elegant frame with mild, fine-grain tannins and adequate acidity. Reserved mid-palate impression and finish, but has charm. Tasted twice. 6/24/2012.
2010 Wildcat Mountain Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast – Sold Out!
89 Points: Superripe in flavors of cherry pie filling and spice, this Pinot Noir is nice and dry. Brisk acidity accompanies the richness, balancing it and brightening the mouthfeel. It seems best now, so drink up. -S.H. . -S.H. (8/1/2012)
Very Good –. 100% de-stemmed, minor acid and water additions to counteract high sugar. Inoculated fermentations. Aged 10 months in 50% new French oak (Remond). Clone 828. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. Nicely perfumed with vivid aromas of dark cherries, plum sauce, grilled beef, wildflower and seasoned oak. Darker cherries and berries are featured on a middleweight frame, with hints of herbs, straw and tobacco, becoming more expressive over time in the glass. Soft, well-tamed mountain tannins, finishing with a flourish of dark berry fruit. Will benefit from more bottle aging. This vineyard pumps out wines of considerable interest year in and year out. 6/24/2012.
2010 Soberanes Vineyard Pinot Noir, Santa Lucia Highlands – Sold Out!
93 Points: This is a great success in a challenging vintage. Dry and silky in the mouth, it’s marked by brisk acidity, firm tannins and intricate black-cherry, cola and licorice flavors. It feels really interesting and changes with every sniff and sip. Very nice now, and it will develop over the next six years. -S.H. (8/1/2012)
Good+. Inaugural bottling. Pisoni clone. 100% de-stemmed. Aged 10 months in 50% new French oak (Remond), and another 3 months in bottle before release. Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Takes some work to bring the nose out, but it grudgingly offers pleasing aromas of dark berries and exotic spices. Lip-smacking, middleweight core of perfectly ripe dark red and black berry and plum fruit. Very good supporting acidity and oak, lacking slightly in finishing length and intensity. Quintessential Santa Lucia Highlands fruit profile. 6/24/2012.
2009 Doctor’s Vineyard Pinot Noir: Sold Out
92 Points and Cellar Selection: The high score reflects the wine’s potential, because it has been put on the market before it’s ready to be opened. Fresh and zippy in acidity, its flavors are of raspberry and cherry pie filling, while sweet, caramelized oak has not yet been integrated. Cellar it for a year or two, even longer. It should be quite a beautiful wine by the end of 2012. — S.H. (5/1/2011)
Very Good. 14.3% alc., pH 3.55, $52. Aged for 11 months in 50% new Franch oak from Remond. Clones 828, 777, 667 and Swan. This is a crowd pleaser and a little more substantial tease with its exuberant scent of black cherries, dark red berries and forest floor. The tasty fruit is well robed in suede tannins creating an invitingly smooth mouth feel. Like eating kirsch-soaked cherries on a velvet blanket. 12/15/2010.
2009 Hayley Vineyard Pinot Noir: Sold Out
90 Points and Cellar Selection: It’s a shame this young wine was released well before it’s anywhere near ready to be consumed. But it was, with the result that it’s all fresh tannins, acidity and jammy raspberries, cherries and cola. Tastes simple and candied now, but if you give it a year or two, it should start to come around. — S.H. (5/1/2011)
Very Good. 14.2% alc., pH 3.73, $52. Unusual wine in that it is 100% clone 114. This Pinot is the most feminine, the angel of the lineup. Very pretty perfume of cherries, strawberries and spice echoed in the flavors on the palate. Soft, forward and charming, with a spark of acidity to enliven the cherry driven finish. 12/15/2010.
2009 Split Rock Vineyard Pinot Noir: Sold Out
90 Points and Cellar Selection: Seems rushed to market. The wine is still rough, and tannic and acidic, with fresh raspberry and cherry fruit flavors overlaid with sweet oak. Quite good and distinguished, but if you buy it, stash it in the cellar until sometime in 2012 or even 2013. — S.H. (5/1/2011)
Good. 14.2% alc., pH 3.73, $52. 14.3% alc., pH 3.82, $52. Fermented as 100% clone 667 with small amounts of clones 115 and 828 added at blending. Rugged and muscular, this wine offers a bold array of earth-kissed, fleshy and savory dark stone fruits. As is typical for clone 667, the color is strong and intense and the tannins are firm and angular. Will appeal to fruit hedonists. Put this one in your cellar while you drink the Hayley and Doctor’s wines. 12/15/2010.
2008 Doctor’s Vineyard Pinot Noir: Sold Out
91 Points: Tasted at a little more than a year of age, this Pinot Noir is a bit brusque. It should have been held back for another six months, to let the tannins, fruit and oak knit together. With very rich black cherry, black raspberry, cola and sweet smoky oak flavors, it should begin to resolve by late Fall 2010, and provide pleasant drinking for another 3–4 years. — S.H. (5/1/2010)
Good. 14.7% alc., pH 3.64, $52. Inaugural release from this new producer who donates 100% of profits from sales to a charitable foundation. 100% destemmed. Primarily Dijon clone 115 and Calera selection with smaller amounts of 667, 2A and Swan. Barreled as 70% free run juice and 30% press fraction. Aged 11 months in 50% new French oak barrels. Moderately dark reddishpurple color in the glass. Brooding aromas of blackberries, ripe strawberries and a hint of oak sap and toast. A fruit-driven wine displaying charming and generous flavors of plums, dark berries and quince. Thick and bold, but not jammy, with supple tannins leaving a bit of heat in its wake on the finish. Very typical of Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir. 6/8/2010.