Estate Pinot Noir. Classic notes of forest floor, sassafras, plums, black currants, cherries, sauteed mushrooms and a meaty character make an appearance in this full-bodied, opulent, gorgeously fresh and lively Pinot Noir. At age 14, it is firing on all cylinders, and should continue to do so for another 8-10 years. This is a brilliant effort from a vintage generally deemed incapable of producing wines this profound. (RP)
Full ruby-red. Subtle, multidimensional nose offers wild raspberry, gunflint, violet and chocolate. Then densely packed and precise but tightly wound in the middle palate, conveying a powerful impression of energy but not yet fully expressing itself. Less sweet and viscous today than the Blue Slide, which has an almost grenache-like thickness of texture by comparison-no doubt due to its well-integrated acidity. This opened spectacularly in the glass to show hints of wild berries, mocha, minerals and violet. Extremely long on the aftertaste, in the very dry, adult style I've associated with Helen Turley's wines (including chardonnays and cabernets too) through the years. Wetlaufer maintains that this will outstrip the Blue Slide with a few years of additional bottle aging, and I have no reason to question that assertion. (ST) 95+
Wonderful purity of flavor and excellent concentration. Spades of ripe, rich plum, black cherry, boysenberry and wild berry fruit are accented by rose petal aromas and a nice touch of fresh earth. Shows heat and very ripe tannins, but what impresses most is the depth and clarity of the fruit. *Collectibles* (JL)
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2013 Solomon Hills "Solomon Hills Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay (Previously $40)