Posts Tagged ‘value pinot noir


Wine: Left Coast Cellars Cali’s Cuvee Pinot Noir’m always on the search for a great value in Pinot Noir, however the style of Pinot Noir I most enjoy are the big, robust Oregonian guys. Therein lies an issue, most of the ones I fall in love with are considered a great value at the $40-60 range and that is not my idea of a bargain. However, most of the PN I try in the sub $20 range are too fruit controlled and lacking in body for my taste. I have in the last year found myself defining great value in Oregon’s Pinot Noir as $25-35 bottles and am content to stay in that comfort zone as there is so much demand that these values could easily command higher prices on the open market these days.

The last year or so has introduced me to Left Coast Cellars and I’m thrilled with their entire catalog of fine Oregon Wines. Left Coast Cellars’ Cali’s Cuvee Pinot Noiris a great value at $24.99. After a quick swirl, the nose is dominant with blueberry and dark cherry–not the typical raspberry that accompanies this grape. There is a slight hint of cola that is pleasing. The wine also has a rather full bodied feel.

My first impression with this wine on the palate is “big” and would pair well with a nice piece of Salmon. The cola and cherry flavors really come through and dominate the palate.

The finish is persistent–the fruit and acidity seem to be well balanced as well as the alcohol. Overall I this wine is perfect for a heavier piece of fish like Salmon or a beef filet. “Steak Pinot” I call it and steak I am having with it


Wine: Rickshaw Pinot Noir

Rickshaw Pinot Noir

Rickshaw Pinot Noir

As always we’re on the lookout for a wine that is a standout at a bargain price point. Crushpad Wine’s Banshee Project is a winery to keep our eyes on for such products. For example, they are producing Rickshaw Pinot Noir out of Sonoma County California sourcing the grapes from pretty renowned vineyards that were (as I understand the story) “extra grapes” that weren’t going to make it to the market. Hence, they got a deal and pass the deal on to us, the consumer! I like to think of it as one of the best wines in an ugly label on the market!

Many of the high quality Sonoma Pinot Noirs that are deep dark blackberry with jam and spice retail well above the $40-50 range, but Rickshaw Pinot Noir retails just under $20- half the price of the wines of equal or lesser quality from the very same regions and (in some cases) the same vineyards.

The winemaker’s notes are as follows:

Rickshaw is a fun, lip-smacking pinot noir perfect for picnics, sneaking into movie theaters and other such shenanigans. It is a blend made from a couple of sources scattered throughout Sonoma County. The resulting wine has hallmark pinot spice on the nose and fills the mouth with juicy red and blue fruits. Very smooth. We have bottled Rickshaw under screwcap for convenience and quality control.

Being a Stelvin Closure, or screw cap bottle I typically would recommend this as a wine to drink sooner than later. And while it is phenomenal straight up today I’m willing to take a gamble and bet this jewel will become even more graceful on the palate in a couple of years with the potential to develop a little silky velvet and an even more nuanced sensation of blackberry jam subtly lit by white pepper on the finish- that is if you’re patient enough to wait knowing that it’s a winner today!

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