Plant the old-line Pommard clone in the fractured sandstone soils of the Russian River Valley and you get a silken beauty like this 2007 Flax. The vines, planted in 1996, produced a wine with the textural richness of great Russian River Pinot and the transparent red fruit clarity Pommard can achieve in top sites. The floral fruit and tannin meld seamlessly, fragrant, cool and foresty. And for all its concentrated flavor, it tastes as clean and fresh as rainwater. For quail roasted with hedgehog mushrooms.
Despite firm tannins and tough acidity this wine is so rich and silky, you can drink it now, with decanting. It floods the mouth with raspberries, cherries, chocolate, anise, cinnamon spice and sweet oak. Absolutely delicious, with a silky, seductive mouthfeel.
The 2007 Pinot Noir Flax Vineyard possesses one of the deepest ruby colors of all these Pinots as well as a big, sweet nose of boysenberries, black cherries, earth, and spice. Rich and medium to full-bodied, it is among the most generous, sumptuous, and accessible of these offerings. (RP)
Inky ruby. Deep, youthfully brooding cherry and dark berry skin scents are complicated by anise and black tea. Very rich, with fleshy blackberry and kirsch flavors, a chewy texture and slow-building tannins. The tannins gain power on the finish, which strongly echoes the cherry and licorice notes. No way I'd touch this one for at least another five years. (ST) 93+
Deep and somewhat brooding ripe black cherry fruit mingles with smoky and dried lavender smells in this ripe, yet still quite undeveloped wine. Its early suppleness and slightly coating viscosity on the palate gives way later as firmer lines come into play, and while there are unmistakable varietal fruit cherries and dried raspberries evident in its flavors, they are a long way from fully expressive at this point. Here again, bottle age is a near necessity for the future. *Two Stars*
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2013 Solomon Hills "Solomon Hills Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay (Previously $40)