Vivid red. High-pitched red berry and cherry aromas are complemented by white pepper and allspice. Silky and seamless in texture, offering energetic redcurrant and bitter cherry flavors that slowly gain sweetness as the wine opens with air. Closes on a subtly smoky note, with very good clarity and fine-grained tannins.
The Eola-Amity Hills excels in this sort of smoky, mineral-driven red, a Pinot with brooding density. While marked by lavish oak, that doesn’t take away from the vibrancy of its fruit. For the moment it’s exhibiting mostly structure, with a sweetness that will gain complexity in the cellar. Serve with a mushroom fricassee.
Blueberry and huckleberry inform an ingratiatingly polished palate, their tart edges and berry seed crunchiness vintage-typical, but the overall impression unusually soft and sweetly ripe for a 2011. A savory undertone of meat stock serves for saliva inducement in a lingering finish. Whereas the 'blue label' Willamette cuvee received around 20% new oak, this bottling saw only second-year and older barrels. I imagine that it will serve admirably through at least 2017. (DS)
Spicy and peppery from the start, this cool vintage Pinot is decidedly herbal with a pine needle sharpness. The tart, brambly red fruit flavors show medium concentration and fine balance overall.
Lean, fresh and tight, with firm tannins around a narrow core of floral raspberry and white pepper flavors, persisting on the delicate finish. Best after 2014.
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