Russian River Valley, CA; 14.5% ABV
$7 at the Berkeley, CA, store on 24 Feb
There’s been a bit of excitement on this blog for a while about the impending, now recent, arrival of a collection of Russian Hill wines. This is my first bottle of the few I’ve bought so far, and I thought it was quite good for the price.
I first poured off a single-glass screw-capped bottle for another night, and then just let the rest air slowly in the original bottle since there was very little or no sediment. Initially, the wine shows lighter red cherry fruit and earthy orange and root beer of nice, aged and gently funky Pinot Noir, finishing with acid that was a bit sharp or rough. Although not too bad at first, I thought it got better after about 1:15 minutes, reaching its peak around 1:45 after opening. At that point, the fruit dominated and was darker, sweeter, and richer, tasting predominantly of dark red cherry, redder plum, and dark red raspberry, with the other complexities now well integrated. Even though it needed a bit of air, I thought at times that its acid hinted at the wine’s becoming too old, so drink up!
Tonight, I opened the saved bottle, and the wine initially was quite tart, although not in a too-old kind of way. After it was open for 40 minutes or so, the fruit darkened similarly to how it did last night, and was very nice. It was still a little on the acid side, so this is likely a good food wine. In comparison to other GO Pinots of late, this is definitely worth the extra dollar more than the Swami, but a good bottle of Cima Collina is probably worth the dollar more than this wine.