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WHAT THE PRESS IS SAYING ABOUT US - 2009 VINTAGE

~ Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

2009 EMERALD RIDGE VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Bright dark red. Subtly complex, soil-driven aromas of black raspberry, flowers and spices. Dense, sweet, concentrated and deep, but with a light touch to the enticing raspberry and spice flavors. Expands impressively with air to show an avalanche of darker blackberry and blueberry fruit. Sappy, sexy wine with suave tannins and excellent length. Offers uncanny richness and flavor intensity for a pinot with a moderate 13.5% alcohol...93."

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Good deep red. Macerated sour cherries in alcohol on the nose, Silky and highly concentrated but unevolved and not yet showing much nuance. There's an almost syrupy, cherry confiture quality to the fruit; it's like a reduction of cherry today. Made from tiny, thick-skinned berries, this seamless wine finishes with extremely fine tannins and sneaky persistence. This pinot will merit a higher score if it develops more complexity with time in bottle...90(+?)?"

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Bright, saturated red with ruby highlights. Reticent aromas of blueberry, sassafras and wild herbs, with a light resiny nuance. Supple and creamy but shapely, with nicely integrated acidity giving shape to this very young pinot. Sappy, extract-rich flavors of raspberry, herbs and earthy spices lead to a classically dry and very savory finish. Conveys a strong impression of soil character that goes well beyond mere fruitiness...92."

2009 MCDOUGALL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Good full red. Brooding aromas of raspberry and menthol are joined by a floral element as the wine opens in the glass. Silky, classically dry and savory, with a light touch and an impression of almost salty minerality. More red and less black in fruit character than the Green Valley examples. Really dusts the palate on the long aftertaste. This opened beautifully with air, but I'd still wait at least a year or two to pull the cork...93."

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~ Burghound

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Aromatically, this somewhat resembles the Emerald Ridge with its perfumed, cool and ultra-pure nose of red and blue berry liqueur that is trimmed in spice and sandalwood nuances. The equally cool and refined middle weight plus flavors possess fine detail and precision on the robust and powerful finish that exhibits a hint of finishing austerity. This impeccably well-balanced effort should age well yet there is enough mid-palate fat to allow it to be enjoyed young too if desired....92 points."

2009 EMERALD RIDGE VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"This is also notably elegant with its pure and notably cool red berry fruit that serves as a backdrop for subtle spice and sandalwood notes. There is good richness to the satiny medium-bodied flavors that possess excellent detail and fine complexity on the balanced and admirably long finish. This is also extremely stylish and altogether lovely...91 points."

2009 MCDOUGALL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Here too there are background notes of sandalwood, spice and cinnamon that add breadth to the highly scented nose of mostly red currant and plum aromas that marry into rich, round and generous flavors that culminate in an utterly delicious, complex and lingering finish that coats the mouth with dry extract. This doesn�t offer the sheer depth of the best here but it is quite attractive in its own right...90 points."

2009 DUTTON RANCH PINOT NOIR
"A perfumed and beautifully elegant nose speaks of both red and blue pinot fruit that slides seamlessly into rich, round and quite supple flavors that possess a seductively textured mouth fell as the abundant dry extract imparts a velvety quality to the delicious yet serious finish that offers both good depth and length. Lovely...90 points."


2009 DEVIL'S GULCH VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"A spiced and very pretty nose of mixed red berries and distinct cranberry nuances introduces rich, round and nicely concentrated flavors that are both delicious and possess fine volume before culminating in a dry, clean and lingering finish. This moderately complex effort is a touch grapey at present but I suspect that this character will attenuate with a few years of bottle age...89 points."

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"A sexy and highly spiced nose of plum and red berry liqueur aromas precedes supple, forward and delicious flavors that possess a sappy "drink me now" mouth feel, all wrapped in an easy-to-like finish. This is not as elegant or complex as the Emerald Ridge but it's certainly appealing in its fashion. To enjoy almost immediately...89 points."

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~ Wine Enthusiast

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Mouthwatering acidity and berry freshness mark this muscular young Pinot Noir. It's gritty in tannins and brilliant in acids, with subtle flavors of sour red cherries, persimmons and cola, as well as a mushroomy earthiness to which oak adds exotic sandalwood notes. Very dry and fine, complex and provocative, a wine to let warm in the glass as it changes by the minute...95 points and a Top 100 American Wine."

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Shows the elegantly crisp, almost austere structure of the winery's 2009s, courtesy of the cool vintage. Tight at first in acids and tannins, as it warms it gives off deep layers of sour cherries, cola, pomegranates and rhubarbs, all of them dry, earthy fruits that sing of the soil. Should develop bottle complexity through 2015...93 points."

2009 DEVIL'S GULCH VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"You can taste Marin's cool climate in the exotic, forest-scented pine needle, wild thyme and bitter cherry flavors of this elegant, complex young Pinot. It's completely dry and savory in acidity. An elusive, subtle, captivating wine that should do interesting things over the next six years. Cellar Selection...93 points."

2009 MCDOUGALL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Somewhere between the acidity and dryness, this Pinot has a terrifically interesting core. It's a subtle wine, now suggesting cherry fruit, now retreating in favor of earthier mushrooms, minerals and pine needles, framed in firm tannins. Strikes out new territory for cool-climate Pinot Noir, less ripe, lower in alcohol and more exciting. Editors' Choice...94 points."

2009 DUTTON RANCH PINOT NOIR
"A dry, robust Pinot Noir. Starts out a little rustic, with big tannins and acidity that give the cherries a sour candy taste. But it's complex, with a meaty edge, and elegantly constructed. Gets better as it breathes in the glass...90 points."

2009 RUED VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
"Acidic, in the winery's style, with a tart, citrusy brightness to the dry flavors of butterscotch, sautéed bananas, green apples and pears. An exotic Chardonnay to drink now, and don't serve it too cold...90 points."

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~ Wine Spectator

2009 EMERALD RIDGE VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Clean, fresh, vibrant and complex, with zesty wild berry, sour cherry and raspberry fruit that's lively, spicy and well-structured, ending with a refreshing aftertaste that offers delicacy and finesse...92 points."

2009 MORELLI LANE VINEYARD ZINFANDEL
"Shows structure and lots of personality, with bold aromas of freshly cracked pepper and anise that lead to complex yet sleek flavors of boysenberry, thyme and mineral. Tannins sneak in on the finish...91 points."

2009 STOETZ RIDGE VINEYARD ZINFANDEL
"Sleek and well-focused, with black raspberry and brown spice aromas and elegant, layered black cherry, toast and caramel notes that finish with big but ripe tannins. Drink now through 2016...91 points."

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~ Restaurant Wine

2009 DUTTON RANCH CHARDONNAY
"...round and full bodied; a fruity, finely flavored Chardonnay with good balance and a long finish. It tastes of apple, peach, pear, pineapple, honey,vanilla, and oak. Great value...4 stars."

2009 RUED VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
"...beautifully balanced and elegantly flavored; a moderately rich wine with a long, persistent finish, tasting of peach, candied lemon, passion fruit, vanilla, toast and oak. Exceptional...5 stars."

2009 DUTTON RANCH PINOT NOIR
"...An extraordinary range of 2009s, highlighting both the excellence of the vintage and the Pinot Noir prowess of this winery. The Dutton Ranch is amazing good in its own right: extremely ripe and fragrant, a Pinot Noir that is full bodied, medium rich, well balanced, and long on the finish, tasting of black cherry, strawberry jam, nutmeg, toast, mint and spicy oak. Long persistence, Great value...4+ stars."

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"...full bodied and crisp; a wine with evident richness, good balance, and a very long finish, tasting of black cherry, raspberry, toast, caramel and spicy oak...5 stars."

2009 DEVIL'S GULCH VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"..rich, supple, and well balanced; a complex, finely flavored wine with a very long finish. It tastes of kola nut, caramel, strawberry jam, sour cherry, toast and spicy oak...5 stars."

2009 MCDOUGALL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"...wonderful: full bodied, crisp, and long on the palate; an elegantly flavored Pinot, with a crisp, persistent finish, tasting of cherry, toast, pomegranate, vanilla, red licorice, and spicy oak...5 stars."

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"...outstanding: well balanced and finely flavored, with full body, rich fruit, and light new oak character. It is long on the palate, with a crisp, persistent finish, tasting of black cherry, kola nut, nutmeg, black licorice, toast, and caramel...5 stars."

2009 MORELLI LANE VINEYARD ZINFANDEL
"Fleshy, full bodied, and finely flavored; a lightly oaked, well balanced Zin with plum, boysenberry, cherry, toast, and white pepper aromas/flavors. Unusually elegant in style. Very long finish ...5 stars."

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~ Wine & Spirits

2009 EMERALD RIDGE VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"The color of the wine is raspberry bright, seeming to glow in the glass. The fruit is tightly compressed in its tannin for now, feeling both lean and chocolatey soft. Give this a year or two in bottle to unwind...91 points and Year's Best Pinot Noir."

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~ Decanter

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Striking violet and forest-floor perfume. Youthful and tight palate with perfectly ripened dark cherry fruit braced by crisp acidity and a pleasantly earthy edge...18.5 points - 5 stars."

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Has a cool-climate nose of dark, fleshy fruit, herbs and mint. The palate is bracingly acidic, yet juicy and generous. Firm tannins suggest cellaring...18 points - 4 stars."

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~ Connoisseur's Guide to California Wine

2009 DUTTON RANCH CHARDONNAY
"The winemaker's hand shows here insofar as the wine's deep, well-defined fruit is matched step for step with a fair bit of sweet oak spice, and the tactile polish that it displays on the palate makes it a Chardonnay to be enjoyed in the near term. Still, it firms up at the finish in a way that suggests it will keep very well, and whether drunk now or later, it wins easy endorsement...92 points."

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"This incisively varietal effort is long on substantial, young Pinot fruit without resorting to high ripeness. It smells and tastes of cherries and violets and cola and dark soils, and its supple feel presages classic varietal velvet to come. Its balancing acids and very trim tannins speak to a fine future ahead, and, as much as we like this now, it is not close to showing its best...92 points."

2009 MORELLI LANE VINEYARD ZINFANDEL
"Ripe blackberry aromas tinged with bits of dried twig on the one hand and pert cherries and cranberries on the other make a good if still somewhat tight beginning, and the wine returns the favor on the palate where its youthful flavors are long, tasty and refined but have plenty of room to grow way before they show their best. Medium-full in body and a bit tannic at this stage, this is one zinfandel that we will put away for a bit...91 points."

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~ Dan Berger's Vintage Experiences

2009 DEVIL'S GULCH VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"From a cold spot on the Marin coast. Cranberry, pepper with hints of cherry, and a finesse this vineyard rarely shows. Needs 2-3 years to develop and display depth...Exceptional."

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Exotic spice with wild berries, hints of violet, cherry, and tea and deep-set mid-palate fruit that needs at least another year before opening ...Exceptional."

2009 MCDOUGALL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Bright red and sour cherry, pomegranate, and a load of potential. A bit tannic. Needs age. The best "McDougall" Dan has ever made...Exceptional."

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"Bright cherry and exuberant fruit, but slightly hard. Needs time...Exceptional."

2009 CHERRY RIDGE VINEYARD SYRAH
"Yet another in a long series of fabulous, and underpriced, Syrahs. Black pepper, violet, black cherry, earth, and terrific potential. (I once told Dan he should charge $75 a bottle for this stuff, based solely on quality. It's still underpriced.)...Exceptional."

2009 RUED VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
"The complexity of this wine simply is overwhelming with lemon curd, lichee, and a faint hazelnut element that adds depth. Montrachet should be this good for how much the French charge for it. Fabulous wine...Exceptional."

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~ PinotReport

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"...deep stewed cherry aromas with some spice and earthy notes; deep, rich, complex flavors of stewed cherry with cinnamon and earthy notes; silky texture, sweet oak; good structure and balance; long finish. Deep, complex Pinot with really delightful flavors; drinks well now but has structure to last...92."

2009 DEVIL'S GULCH VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"...deep, spicy cherry aromas with a touch of rhubarb; complex, earthy cherry flavors with some spice and herbal notes; touch of tannin and oak; good structure and balance; long finish. Interesting herbal, earthy style with nice flavors. Would love this with a mushroom pasta...91."

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR

"...complex, deep stewed dark cherry aromas with earthy, forest floor notes; rich, ripe, juicy cherry flavors with some earthy, spicy notes; touch of tannin and oak; good structure and balance; long finish. Juicy cherry fruit is this Pinot's calling card. Delicious to drink on its own, but will reward your cellar patience...93."

2009 MCDOUGALL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"...spicy cherry and raspberry aromas; rich, ripe, cherry flavors with earthy, spicy notes; some tannin and oak; good structure and balance; long finish. Bright, interesting Pinot with great fruit—needs some time in the glass to open up...92."

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~ Ken's Wine Guide

2009 MCDOUGALL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"...one of my favorite so far from their 2009 vintage. It opens with a fragrant black currant bouquet with notes of black raspberry and beets. On the palate, this wine is medium bodied, slightly acidic, rather juicy and fruit forward. The flavor profile is a tasty mild raspberry with hints of oak and strawberry. The finish is dry and its fine tannins are elegant...91."

2009 FOX DEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"This very dark violet Pinot opens with a prune and black raspberry bouquet with a hint of cherry, rhubarb and vanilla. On the palate, this wine is medium bodied, balanced, juicy and savory. The flavor profile is a red currant and plum blend with notes of gentle mild oak. We also detected a hint of light chocolate and raspberry towards the end. The finish is dry and its fine tannins are soft...90.5."

2009 FREESTONE HILL VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
"This dark ruby colored Pinot opens with a very fragrant red raspberry and pomegranate bouquet. On the palate, this wine is medium bodied and fruit forward. The flavor profile is a very juicy red currant with notes of boysenberry and a hint of raspberry and oak. The finish is dry and its fruit flavors are slightly prolonged...89.5."

2009 RUED VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
"This yellow colored Chardonnay opens with an attractive green melon bouquet with a hint of vanilla oak and honey. On the palate, this wine is full bodied, balanced, and ultra smooth. The flavor profile is a tasty mild apple with a hint of melon and gentle oak. The finish is dry and pleasant...92."

2009 MORELLI LANE VINEYARD ZINFANDEL
"This very dark ruby colored Zinfandel opens with a mild strawberry and black raspberry bouquet. On the palate, this wine is light to medium bodied, nicely balanced, and smooth. The flavor profile is a gentle black cherry with a hint of raspberry and light oak. The finish is dry and its well managed tannins are very easy going. This is about as elegant as Zin can get...91."

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~ Narsai David, KCBS

2009 DUTTON RANCH CHARDONNAY
"Very appealing, pale straw color, lush with medium body on the palate. Flavors of vanilla and ripe tropical fruits. The spicy touch of lemons and limes balances it out. Here's a wine that's not over heavy with alcohol or oak but has a creamy texture that rolls on the tongue. A delicious Chardonnay. This would go very well with rich seafood or chicken dishes. In fact, it will even complement salmon."

2009 DUTTON RANCH PINOT NOIR
"Medium deep crimson color. Distinct smoky, earthy aromas of Pinot Noir touched with ripe berries. Spicy, bright herbal notes up front on the palate. Plenty of tannins, soft tannins to balance out the fruit and enough acidity to keep your mouth watering."

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~ Newspapers, Websites, Blogs and More

2009 RUED VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
Jefferson Cup Nominee - Jefferson Cup Competition
Double Gold - American Fine Wine Competition

2009 DUTTON RANCH PINOT NOIR
"The nose explodes with dark cherry aromas mixed with cloves; and after a little air in the glass, raspberries and concentrated fruit flavors emerge and dance on the palate. The middle is a symphony with a smooth, elegant finale...5 stars."
~ San Francisco Examiner.com

2009 DUTTON RANCH PINOT NOIR
"Dan Goldfield's commitment to restraint is paying off as a lighter-touch style of Pinot is again gaining its due attention. The Dutton Ranch is a mix of parcels from the Duttons' wide holdings; this latest is heady and exotic, with mint and curry leaf accents to fresh raspberry and cherry. Great mineral tension and subtle tannin to reward aging. The Emerald Ridge Vineyard bottling further finesses that texture."
~ San Francisco Chronicle

 

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