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Holocene Memorialis Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
Holocene Pinot Noir Memorialis is a blend of 777, Pommard and 115 clones from MonksGate vineyard in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA, and it saw about 20% new French oak for 16 months prior to bottling. It is always the lighter and more feminine of the two Holocene wines, with red fruits, white flowers, dried herbs, mushroom and forest floor aromatics, bright acidity and a lithe texture, long finish.
By now, everyone knows that the Willamette Valley is an amazing place to grow Pinot Noir. When Todd Alexander relocated from Napa Valley to partner up with Force Majeure Vineyards, he knew he also wanted to start a project where he could focus attention on a varietal and growing region that he loved. Part of the excitement of being in the Pacific Northwest is the ability to have access to so many amazing vineyards and so much diversity, along with the opportunity to push boundaries and try new things – something that is becoming increasingly difficult in other growing regions.
He partners up with a few very small, diverse and amazing vineyards in the Willamette Valley, sourcing fruit from these dry-farmed sites that emphasize low yields, sustainable practices and produce outstanding fruit.
The wines are crafted in the same way Todd has been making wine since he was carrying it out at Bryant Family Vineyard in the Napa Valley — utilizing very low-impact, non-industrial techniques, native yeasts, little extraction and little new oak, and never filtering or fining. This allows a real sense of place to show through in the wines that is often dimmed when too much manipulation is undertaken.
The first vintage was 2015, and was released in early 2017.
"I continue to love these Pinot Noirs under Todd Alexander’s Holocene label. While they’re not from Washington State, I was able to taste these during my visit with Force Majeure (which are also made by Todd) and I’m thrilled to be able to include them here." - Jeb Dunnuck (April 2020)
Holocene Apocrypha Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
Apocrypha Pinot Noir tends to showcase the blue and black end of the fruit spectrum, along with a brambly, floral, dried sage and thyme profile, higher acid than the Memorialis and more power.
We tend to enjoy this wine with lamb merguez sausage and saffron rice.
Kistler Vineyards Russian River Valley Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
"The 2021 comes from a cooler Russian River site and offers a complex bouquet of red currants, smoked earth, ground pepper, and exotic floral and rose hip notes. Rich, medium-bodied, and seamless on the palate, its incredibly classy as well as perfectly balanced."
Hailing from the newly established West Sonoma Coast AVA, this inaugural release displays deep ruby in tint with Bing cherry, wild mountain berry, and an ethereal note of damp earth. Vibrant red and blue fruits dance on the palate, accompanied by oyster shell and a stony tension in character with its coastal influences. A silky texture and uplifted acidity add a sophistication and intensity to this wine, as well as a remarkably long finish.
The 2021 Pinot Noir (West Sonoma Coast), a new wine in this range, is lights out. Rich, ample and bold, the 2021 races across palate with layers of purplish fruit, lavender, spice, menthol, licorice and spice. A dollop of stems adds nuance, but without dominating the overall balance. There's terrific acidity and structure to play off the natural fruit richness that is such a distinctive attribute of the best sites in the appellation.
-Vinous 96 Points
Sonoma Bench Pinot Noir comes entirely from the heart of the Russian River Valley, and Green Valley AVA situated on Burnside Rd.
This Pinot Noir shows a deep ruby/garnet red color. The aromas are fresh with raspberry, red fruits with a soft earthy tone. There are vanilla notes from French oak barrel aging. The pallet is lush with roundness, texture, and fruit purity. Tannins are balanced and the finish is firm and refreshing. The length of the wine is elegant and shows harmony and textural balance. 2021 was an exceptionally short harvest in Russian River Valley.
Enjoy now or cellar for 3-5 years,
Belle Glos Clark and Telephone Vineyard Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
Deep ruby red in color with scarlet highlights, Clark & Telephone opens with bountiful aromas of red fruits of cranberry and raspberry jam, laced with clove, cedar, and holiday baking spices. Bold and complex flavors of crushed ripe cherry, cranberry and blueberry pie linger on the palate. The texture is rich and lively, and leads into a warm and structured finish.
This is a very bold style of Pinot Noir, so much that it's not very reflective of the grape but would work well paired with a juicy grilled steak. Concentrated aromas of blackberry, maple syrup and hot pancakes lead into a viscous, thick palate of berry jam, clove and cardamom flavors.
-Wine Enthusiast 91 Points
Dark plum in color with abundant aromas of dark chocolate, black cherry, and sun-ripened blackberry with a hint of cedar. Layered flavors of blackberry and raspberry pie filling, accompanied by notes of cinnamon, chocolate, and nutmeg play on the palate. Smooth and focused with refined tannins and a medium finish.
Clos Saint-Jean Chateauneuf-du-Pape Blanc is made from Grenache Blanc, Clairette and Roussanne.
In a 41 hectare estate, there is only 1 hectare of white varieties: Grenache Blanc, Clairette and Roussanne in roughly equal proportions. The Grenache and Clairette is pressed directly into tank upon reaching the cellar where it is fermented and aged on its lees. The Roussanne is harvested in several passes and pressed into French oak for fermentation and aging. The final wine is blended and bottled in the spring after the harvest.
One of the appellation’s top whites comes from Clos Saint Jean (although it’s their reds that get all the attention), the 2020 Châteauneuf Du Pape Blanc is brilliant, with a fresh, vibrant, focused style to go with classic crushed citrus, tart quince, and acacia flower-like notes. It builds on the palate and is medium-bodied, with richness and depth. Drink it over the coming 10-15 years.
-Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points