Top Sips from IPNC 2011

by Francoise Villeneuve and Jeff Harding
September 2011

This August we attended the 2011 International Pinot Noir Celebration for the first time. The Pinot Noir fest unites wine producers of the grape from around the world, not to mention sommeliers, pinot nuts, and wine-happy consumers. It also turned 25 this year! We went, we saw, we tasted. And these are the wines we can’t stop talking about.

1) R. Stuart & Co. “Rosé d’Or,” NV

Nose: Floral notes, mild red fruit

Flavor Profile: Bright acidity, gentle spice notes, muted fruitiness

More Bubbly: Adult Apple Cider from France

2) Mt. Difficulty Pinot Noir, Central Otago, New Zealand 2009

Nose: Blackberries, raspberries, hint of thyme

Flavor Profile: Soft, red fruit and cinnamon on the mid-palate, high acidity on the finish

More New Zealand Pinots: Pinot Passion: New Zealand Pinot Noirs Make Their Mark

3) Belle Pente Vineyard, Yamhill-Carlton, Oregon 2006

Nose: Dark fruit, strawberry jam

Flavor Profile: Ripe red fruit, bitter dark cherries, mildly floral finish; very structured and food friendly

More Oregon Pinots: A Visit to the Willamette Valley

4) Argyle Winery Brut Rosé, Willamette Valley, Oregon 2008

Nose: Bouquet of roses, black raspberries

Flavor Profile: Black raspberries, green cardamom, cranberries on the mid-palate, orange peel, cream, and red berries on the finish

More Brut Rosés: Rosé Champagne Gets Serious for Valentine's

5) Gloria Ferrer Brut Rosé, Carneros, California 2007

Nose: Strawberries and cream, ripe pears, hint of yeast and roses

Flavor Profile: Creamy at first, raspberries and quince on mid-palate, candied citrus peel and bright acidity on the finish

More California Wine Country: What to Eat and Where to Stay in California’s Wine Country

6) Matello Whistling Ridge Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge, Oregon 2009

Nose: Honeysuckle, cherries, tarragon, thyme, rosemary, damp earth

Flavor Profile: Ripe black cherries, red fruit, licorice, dark chocolate, long finish

More Pinot Noirs: Pinots from the Middle of California

7) Blue Mountain Reserve Pinot Noir, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia 2009

Nose: Red berries, allspice, leather

Flavor Profile: Tart raspberries, cranberries, minerally, smoky finish

More British Columbia: An International Escape: Where to Eat, Drink, and Stay in Vancouver