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2011 Pence Ranch Uplands Pinot Noir 750ml

2011 Pence Ranch Uplands Pinot Noir

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A step up over the 2010, the 2011 Pinot Noir Uplands is a beauty and dishes out red fruit-driven aromas and flavors intermixed with damp underbrush, spring flowers, saddle leather and dried leaves. Complex, interesting and layered, it opens up nicely with air and has gorgeous focus and purity. Give it another year or two and enjoy over the following decade. Drink 2015-2026.

Made by Blair Pence, this estate produces three Pinot Noirs; their base Estate bottling which is a blend from all the different terroirs on the estate; the Westslope which comes from clay soils and windy, west facing slopes; and the Uplands which comes from a higher plateau and calcareous soils. I found the estate bottling to lag the two smaller cuvees significantly, both of which are big, dense effort that have beautiful mid-palate density and depth, and should age gracefully. This is a new estate (2010 was their first release and they have additional plantings of Chardonnay just now coming online) and they’re one to keep on your radar.

90 Points - Robert Parker

Producer: Pence Ranch Winery
Website: www.penceranch.com

Price: $59.99
Sale Price: $54.99

Availability: 8

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Varietal: Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir is responsible for some of the world’s finest wines. Famed for producing the red wines of Burgundy and the Côte d’Or in particular, it is now widely grown in cool climates across Califonia and Oregon, and with increasing success in New Zealand. Although typically used to produce varietal wines, Pinot Noir makes a significant contribution in the wines of Champagne, where it is vinified as a white wine and blended with Cardonnay and Pinot Meunier. On the whole, fresh summer fruit of strawberries, raspberries and red cherries tend to be the identifying qualities, however richer versions express darker fruit including black cherries (kirsch), cherry cola, leather and violets to name a few.

Country: United States
Although wine is made in all 50 states, it is understandable, with almost 90% of the country's production, that California is synonymous with domestic wine. As of 2010 harvest, reports indicate that Washington, New York & Oregon account for additional 6% of production, meanwhile Virginia, Missouri and Texas's wine industries are growing to a point beyond that of just a tourist attraction.

Region: California
California is one of the most diverse wine producing regions of the world. Although it has a history spanning over 200 years, it has experienced most of its growth in the last fifty years. The regions of Napa Valley and Sonoma County have become as renowned as France’s Bordeaux and Burgundy. While Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay are by far the most popular fine wine varieties, producers in the Golden State have also experimented with an unparalleled array of diverse varieties, including Zinfandel, Syrah, Nebbiolo, Sangiovese, and Tempranillo.


Type: Red
Red wine is wine made from dark-coloured grape varieties. The color of red differs based on the grapes variety or varieties used. Interestingly, black grapes yield a juice that is greenish-white. The actual red color comes from anthocyan pigments (also called anthocyanins) from the skin of the grape (exceptions are the relatively uncommon teinturier varieties, which produce a red colored juice). Most of the production centers around the extraction of color and flavor from the grape skin.