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Professional Ratings: 94 Wine & Spirits, 92 The Wine Advocate, 92 International Wine Cellar
Region: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Varietal: Pinot Noir
Other Info: Boutique Wines
Style: Earthy & Spicy
Alcohol By Volume: 13.5%
Item no. 113037
Freedom Hill Pinot Noir 2009 has both great fruit - sweet dark cherries - and great structure. Its nose is both intense and rich with dark berries, wild flowers, roasted sweet spices and has hints of soy, orange blossoms and pain epice. It is equally broad and deep on the palate with a mixture of dark berries, dark earth, roasted fig, and caramelized fruits. These flavors continue well into its lengthy finish with forest floor notes mixing with a complex of dark fruits. This is a wine for richly flavored foods with complex, roasted flavors like ratatouille, lasagne, and for winemaker Mark Vlossak, its signature dish, Porterhouse steak with fried potatoes. It can be enjoyed after decanting 2-3 hours or aged for 12 years.
This savory pinot leads with beguiling scents of plum and anise, suggesting even in its bouquet that it's a high-toned wine. The fresh core of fruit is supported by a fine vinous texture and a white pepper spiciness that runs through many St. Innocent wines, a character winemaker Mark Vlossak attributes to his preference for warmer fermentations. With firm soil-inflected tannins, this is poised for a long life. Or serve it now with wild mushroom pasta.
A St. Innocent 2009 Pinot Noir Freedom Hill displays candied and maraschino cherry with a sizzle of cinnamon, but also – somehow without any sense of misfit – tart-edged blackberry, charred red meats, and savory pan scrapings from same, leading to a vibrant finish of uncontrolled salivation, intense spice, and sappy-sweet persistence. I'd plan to follow this for at least a decade.
Deep red. Sexy black raspberry and cherry aromas are complicated by sassafras, cola and dried rose. Deeply pitched cherry-vanilla and dark berry flavors are enlivened and nicely framed by a spicy quality. Fine-grained tannins add shape and grip to the long, sappy, appealingly spicy finish. This should reward at least another five years of patience.