Thursday, November 5, 2015

Pinot Noir Taste Off: Judd's Hill and Ampelos

By way of background:  Today we are sampling two pinot noirs from the Tasting Room West Coast Red Wine Sampler, which was acquired commercially.  Wines were bottled in 2012.


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Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Judd's Hill Pinot Noir.

Original tasting and review : This is $$$ Judd's Hill Pinot Noir, Milliken Creek Vineyard, Napa Valley, California, 2009, finished at 13.9% alcohol and first sampled six years from vintage date, in November, 2015.

Inspired by this wine:  Everyone carrying big, bright umbrellas in the street parade- but it's sunny out!

In the glass: Medium ruby.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows soft red fruit with Indian spices.  From the aroma, seems like this will be sweet and husky.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact light and fragrantly sweet, showing lively acidity and a crescendo of light red fruit that finishes cleanly.

In summary: Overall, rates three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.

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Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Ampelos Pinot Noir.

Original tasting and review : This is $$$ Ampelos Pinot Noir, Santa Rita Hills, California, 2008, finished at 14.2% alcohol and first sampled seven years from vintage date, in November, 2015.

Inspired by this wine:  A summer road race, as the runners flash by in the sun, I'm waving a flag to cheer them on.

In the glass: Light, fresh-looking ruby.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows a lively, almost boisterously friendly red fruit.  From the aroma, seems like this will be layered, compelling and still light.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact layered with sweet pepper and bright red fruit.  The brightness of the fruit is cut by a sleek, lightly creamy palate.  Finish that is modest in length but layered and clean.

In summary: Overall, rates an easy three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale, almost touching the plus for balance.

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