Friday Sips

Cellar Door Friday Surprise
Pinot Noir Values, One from Oregon, One from Burgundy

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$24.99 BTL./$299.88 CASE

Former Parisian office workers Isabelle and Alain Hasard got bit by the wine bug, gave up their jobs and went to live a dream farming 12 acres of land that they purchased in and around Mercurey in Burgundy’s Cote Chalonnais region. These are humble Burgundy wines that punch way above their weight class with a loaded glove. Also producing Mercurey and Rully, it is easy to assess a producer based on their top Premier and Grand Cru holdings if they have them, but if the vigneron(ne) can make superb regional wine that ultimately separate themselves and shine brightly on all levels.

From 15-20 year old vines, this wine rewards instantaneously with freshness, balance and depth. Low yields along with 25% new oak reveal Sensuous aromatics suggesting wild strawberry, cinnamon stick, kisses of cocoa, pronounced lavender and exotic spice. Dryer than New World Pinot Noir, this wine penetrates pretty deep and is poised and multi-faceted. Complete and very sophisticated for Bourgogne Rouge, it is refined, suave pure and long with pepper and plum dominating the focused finish. Braise some beef and then pour a mushroom sauce over it and get ready to be launched! Awesome juice from a stellar vintage that certainly defies its appellation and twenty-five dollar price tag.

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$29.99 BTL./$359.88 CASE

After retiring from Chehalem, Harry Peterson-Nedry couldn’t stay put and along with his daughter and former Chehalem winemaker Wynne, they started a small but rather prolific operation based around their namesake Ridgecrest Vineyard and upper tier RR Label.

Planted in 1982, Ridgecrest Vineyard was the first to be planted in the now uber-famous Ribbon Ridge appellation. The 2018s to emerge from this cellar are magnificent and this is one of the prettiest Ribbon Ridge wines that I have tasted this year. The nose here is striking with sandalwood, perfumed blackberries, violet and bright cranberry undertones. Luxurious, ethereal and multi-faceted in the mouth, it displays outstanding persistence, superb Thai spice, underlying finesse and a drawn-out, seamless finish. Despite the cushion and alluring aspects, resist the urge to drink it now and have it 2023 – 2030+.