Always a great value, the 2018 Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands reveals a vibrant ruby hue as well as ripe cherry and strawberry fruit intermixed with notes of shiitake mushroom, dried herbs, and some meaty, earthy notes. It's a slightly more finesse-driven wine than some of the single vineyards and is beautifully balanced, has good acidity, and unquestionably plays in the same qualitative ballpark as all of these releases.
This appellation blend offers aromas of candied red cherry, strawberry and mint on the nose. The palate packs fresh, zesty and ripe red fruit with a complex array of herbs and spices, from tarragon and chamomile to marjoram, sage and aniseed. *Editors’ Choice* (MK)
Limpid ruby-red. Spice-tinged red fruits, incense and potpourri on the expansive nose, along with a building mineral overtone. Juicy and energetic on the palate, offering appealingly sweet raspberry and cherry preserve, rose pastille, vanilla and spicecake flavors that show fine definition and back-end cut. Powerful but graceful as well, finishing on a gently tannic note, with sharp clarity and strong persistence. This is a pretty impressive entry-level bottling of Pinot. (JR)
From its inviting aromas of cherries and red plums to its easy-to-get-at, insistently juicy flavors, this affable offering gets good marks for fruity clarity throughout, and, if a tad less weighty and not quite as complex as its single-site mates, it is still a fairly full, very well-balanced Pinot that hits the varietal mark smartly. That it will age nicely for several years is certain, but, of the Roar bunch, it is the one that we would opt to drink first while allowing the others more cellar time.
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