Sunday, April 17, 2011

2001 Kay Brothers Shiraz Hillside Amery Vineyards (Australia, South Australia, Fleurieu, McLaren Vale)

Dark and brooding. The nose is pure black cherries and cherry cola. This has a wonderful mid weight mouthfeel with loads of red/black fruits. There’s hints of cassis, a nice amount of black cherry, red raspberries, some cola, some Kirsch, and some black plum pumice; notes of worn leather; espresso bean, warm river stones, hints of menthol, spice box and wet forest floor. A really pretty and evolved wine that seems in such a perfect place right now, why wait. Gorgeous balance with a near perfect finish, bringing in even darker fruits. I love it. 94 points.

2001 J. Rochioli Pinot Noir - USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley

Ok, so I am not usually one to note on a Pinot. I have hosted winemakers with my tasting group and have left the official notes for some really great Pinots to others. This is one I want to speak of. It's not a regular occurrence that a non-Cabernet makes a WOTN for me on any given group tasting. Today is that day. This was a rusty crimson/strawberry color with a nose of dark strawberries, red raspberries and spring flowers. The palate showed incredible focus of said fruits with more, much more: This was elegant and classy with much depth and structure. The red fruits had a purity and precision that was mind boggling. Even if I did not find a sense of place, I sure got a sense of joy. A flintiness quality that I really loved with hints of cola, cardamom and a note of soy. Balance was amazing as this wine just seemed to float in and out of the palate with nary an edge. Tannins aligned and acidity perfect. What a great Pinot Noir. Wish I had some, and when do I ever say that? (93 pts.)