Soter 'North Valley' Pinot Noir 2009
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Robert Parker 91
"In the 2009 vintage, Soter Vineyards handled the conditions as well as anyone. The entry-level bottling, the dark ruby-colored 2009 North Valley Pinot Noir was aged in only 10-20% new oak. Potpourri, incense, and bright red fruits inform the nose of a savory, round, nicely balanced wine that will deliver considerable pleasure over the next 6+ years."
Stephen Tanzer 91
"Vivid red. Sexy, floral-accented aromas of raspberry, blackberry, lavender and sassafras. Offers an array of berry and spice flavors that gain weight with air. Cola and bitter cherry qualities carry through on the long, sharply focused finish, which shows a subtle touch of bitter chocolate."
"First and foremost, Tony and Michelle Soter are Pinot Noir lovers.
And as a Pinot Noir lover, Tony has dedicated much of his career to producing versatile, seductively aromatic, and affordable Pinot Noir by blending fruit from numerous sites. His Etude Carneros Pinot Noir has become a beloved staple on restaurant lists across the country, and with the North Valley bottling, he intends to transcend that achievement in Oregon.
This is a strategy that has served Tony so well over the years: aim for excellence and value in a blended Pinot Noir. Blending from multiple sources helps ensure consistency and balance, and can often outshine many single-vineyard wines. In this regard, we feel the North Valley Pinot Noir is a truly compelling value.
We do not buy finished wine for the North Valley blend - rather, we secure contracts with growers and pay them by the acre, not the ton. This method allows the grower to prune for low yields - a practice that hastens the ripening process and enhances flavor concentration in the grapes - without losing money. Our viticulturalist Joel Myers and his team from Vinetenders ensure that our pruning and crop-thinning instructions are followed, and that these vineyards are farmed sustainably. Myers and his team pick the grapes on the date and time that we specify. From that moment on, the wine is made using similar methods as our estate wines.
North Valley Pinot Noir sees less new oak than the flagship wines. It is made in a more accessible and versatile format that will give pleasure early and over the medium term. The wine features notes of orange blossoms, cranberries, blackberries, sweet cream, cocoa, minerals, and has a markedly silky and supple mouthfeel. Long and lush, the wine leaves big, thick tears in the glass and its soft entry invites sip after sip. Pour this wine alongside its peers at the same price - you'll be taken in by its winsome charms and remarkable price/quality rapport. Better yet, pour it against your favorite single-vineyard Oregon Pinot, and understand why North Valley is already featured at some of the finest restaurants in the country. " ~ Winery notes
3/5 starsRated by jim on 5/14/2013
PepiOK Pinot...definitely a value play