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Professional Ratings: 91 Connoisseurs' Guide, 90 Wine Spectator
Region: Carneros, California
Varietal: Pinot Noir
Style: Smooth & Supple
Alcohol By Volume: 14.3%
Item no. 105986
2008 was another drought year in Napa Valley, making the vines relatively less vigorous with smaller berries. Bud break in Artesa's Carneros vineyard occurred the usual time -- from mid to late March -- but a severe frost limited the crop size even further. The vineyard team worked hard through the season to ensure even ripeness among the berries. A long heat spell the first week of September signaled the beginning of harvest, however the temperature soon dropped drastically and the weather stayed cool and dry for the rest of the month. Our estate Pinot Noir grapes were hand harvested in September at full maturity.
Heady aromas of raspberry, cherry and wild strawberry jump from the glass, tinged with notes of anise and coriander. Pure and vibrant, the wine delivers sweet red cherry and berry flavors that pick up spicy notes of clove and cinnamon and a hint of toffee on the finish. Fruit concentration, bright acidity and velvety tannins are the hallmarks of this estate-grown Pinot Noir.
Starting off with focused red cherry aromas and following from there with nuances of dried spices hinting at nutmeg and a hint of cinnamon, the wine fully lives up to its fine aromatic start by delivering flavors that are at once reasonably deep yet vital and impeccably balanced and fairly long at the finish. Although not a wine of great sinew, it is firm and brisk at this point and has the stuff to age well for three to five years.
Spicy and rich, with ripe plum, blackberry and black cherry flavors. There's good intensity and depth, with firm tannins and a tight focus. Finishes with a dash of smoky notes. Drink now through 2019. 4,028 cases made.