I was just saying I needed some more Pinot. That said, it’s because of an actual shortage of bottles that are ready to drink, and those 2011s look awfully young. Drinking windows?
Oh snap, thought we were still woot-offing and jumped right in. Oh well, wife loves Pinot so we’ll enjoy, and I can get some sleep…
Upside, my first first sucker!!!
I enjoyed a bottle of this last week. I’ll post notes later this afternoon when I get home. Overall it is a light Pinot with bright red fruits and forward acidity designed to be consumed with food, similar to many Burgundies that I have had. Very different from CA Pinot.
My bottle was quite tight at first and drank better on the second night so either decant or wait a few years to consume. I can’t remember if I had the 2009 or 2011, I’ll check this afternoon.
Biggio Hamina Pinot Noir 2009 ~ Duex Vert, Yamhill-Carlton District (located inside Willamette Valley)
I was lucky enough to magically acquire a bottle of this wine. Magic, I say. Thanks acquisition magic!
**Here are the full tasting notes: **
The wine has a screw top, which I have absolutely no problem with in a Pinot. You’re not going to age it long, so there’s no reason to waste cork and risk corking the vino. That’s a big hill to die on to some people, so I’ll let them fight about it. For me, it just meant it was really easy and fast to open.
I served it slightly chilled and planned my meal for a pinot. Just like a pinot should do…it changed greatly depending on the food pairing. So, pairing notes included!
Color was a brownish-red and a little thin – not atypical of a pinot noir. First whiff was – mmmmm…cherry. I could have guessed this wine a pinot noir just from the aroma. The bouquet stayed about the same the entire evening for both of us and was lovely. Even towards the end my S.O. said, “the smell of this wine is still really great.”
First Impressions (no food)
Me: Strong cherry, especially at the beginning. I get some of the earthiness that I love in a Willamette Valley pinot, but it doesn’t last long and is a little overwhelmed by the red fruit. There’s a sour note on the back end, making me think sour cherries. I enjoyed the flavor of this wine…but I think it would have been better with a little less of that sour at the end. First impression was good, but also that it is less complex than I like my Pinots to be.
The “heft” of this wine is a very classic Pinot Noir…that is to say there isn’t a lot of heft. It’s a thin red, just like it’s supposed to be. I very much applaud this, as so often I stumble across things labeled Pinot Noir (I’m looking at you, CA) that are big, dark, fruit bombs…and while often enjoyable…not good showings of what I think a Pinor Noir should be.
SO: Good, but this isn’t quite as balanced as I like my Pinots. The tobacco comes too early and disappears. Lots of cherry and strawberry in it.
With Some Maytag Blue Cheese
Me: Good. The cheese tones down some of that cherry/strawberry flavor. By muting the red fruit a little, I can taste the tobacco/earthiness a bit more. However, the blue cheese also toned down the flavor volume, over all. It’s certainly not a bad pairing, but the wine fades into the background and just plays support.
SO: Nice pairing, but the lack of complexity is even more obvious. Less of that strawberry flavor.
With the Real Appetizer – Broiled fresh figs, stuffed with blue cheese, wrapped in bacon
Me: This was the best pairing of the evening. The sweetness of the figs combined with the sharpness of the blue cheese perfectly tuned the red fruits in this wine. The cherry was there, but without the sour.
SO: This [the pairing] is really good. You know, this [the wine] isn’t as complex and good as the [Roessler] Bluejay, but I would still drink the hell out of it.
Me (again): That quote “this isn’t as complex and good as the Bluejay, but I would still drink the hell out of it,” is probably the perfect summary of our notes and opinions. (Note: Bluejay was Anderson Valley in CA…but I still thought it was a great example of a pinot noir and is one of my favorite woots, ever.)
With Dinner – Mushroom ravioli tossed with a few sun dried tomatoes and olive oil
Me: I had picked this dinner out thinking the chopped portabellas in the pasta would bring out the earthiness of a pinot. The lesson I (re)learned was how potent tomatoes are around wine tastings – even in small doses. The major flavor interaction here was the acidity of the sundried tomato bringing back out the cherry in the wine. It’s amazing how different this wine tastes next to the pasta than it did next to the fig appetizer.
Not unpleasant, but not really value added, either. It just makes the wine into a one-dimensional, one trick pony – and that trick is bright cherry. Much like the blue cheese, I think the wine helps the food out, but also fades into the background while doing it. If I wasn’t consciously taking tasting notes the entire time, I wouldn’t have noticed the wine much (but I would have easily kept reaching for it).
SO: Yeah, I agree with the cherry assessment. Not bad. This wine will be a great deal if it’s around the $15-$20 mark.
With Cheese Course Dessert – Smoked Gouda
Me: Nothing really new to add here. This pairing is similar to the plain blue cheese one. Tones down the red fruit just a bit. Both cheese and wine are tasty.
Summary: We both really like a classic Willamette Valley pinot noir and have spent some time in that Valley tasting. For me, a perfect one has complex layers of cherry, earthiness, tobacco…that unfold for you in an orchestrated symphony, while still staying a very delicate and thin wine. My SO really wants the leathery/tobacco to show up with some force. We have a high bar on Willamette pinot noirs, mostly because we love them so much. The wine maker nailed the varietal as far as body, color, and aroma. While it falls a little short of perfectly balanced (it’s just not as complex as my ideal pinot would be), - it’s still a really nice wine and a good example of a pinot noir with bright red fruits.
While it might fall a little short of hanging with the (expensive) upper end Willamette Pinot Noirs, it’s still really good - much better than most things labeled Pinot Noir on the shelf. Truth of the matter is, I can’t afford to drink upper end Willamette PNs…making this wine a good deal at this price point. I’m in for 1.
Cyradia, wonderful summary. I also love me some Oregon Pinot. Looks like I’ll have to pull the trigger.
For the DV that could sleep for a few years or have a splashy decant. The 11 is ready now!
Welcome! Glad you could join us.
Feel free to tell the group about yourself or your wine.
Met Todd at Pinot Camp a few years back. He was with Maysara at the time. Was a great time and a great guy to talk wine with. Haven’t really followed much so guess I should pull the trigger.
And re: no New York shipping. Maybe Woot (WCC) got a letter like this:
Cyradia, what was your impression of the acidity? Numbers wise it looks a little flat to me. But the numbers don’t always tell the whole story and I like my Pinot with nice bright acidity.
Thanks for the link. This could be the reason there’s no new york shipping, but it brings up a couple of ? Why are other sites still shipping to NY and why doesn’t WD give us some info.
hi this is a travel day, but to answer the question about the chemistry.
Many times with the whole cluster wine you can have what seems to be a low acid by the numbers wine however what the tannins do is give a false impression of acidity. So you know I’ve got what looks like high pH and a low acid wine. The acid is very much prevalent from a perceived standpoint. one of those interesting whole cluster realities. I will check back in just a little bit stronger cell service.
You were just given info and there’s more in the pub. And other sites can’t ship to NY. WTSO, for one, has been shut down to NY. And retailers, as well. Wine Library received a cease and desist order.
Come on be nice, i’ve read all info given and i posted in the pub. I asked why there isn’t any info from WD. Also i ordered from wtso TODAY and it looks like wine library is still taking NY orders.
Didnt mean to come off as rude. Here’s a link to the cease and desist order:
WTSO is affected also. Whether or not other retailers are following the law, it is there and it affects both of them, and I imagine, many more.
Sorry for the late response…was tied up with work all day and traveling a bit. I think the winemaker’s answer is probably better.
My less eloquent answer is…it seemed at the right level to me. I really like the bright cherry taste of Willamette Pinots (and I got that here), and I think that goes hand in hand with the acidity. I also think the perceived acidity is what was playing well with the sun dried tomatoes.
11’s drink tightly in general. Easy to splash them up or let them breathe for awhile.
Kyle, same link I posted above, which is specifically addressed to Wine Library. I was just guessing that (Woot)WCC got a similar letter, but another guess is just that this letter to Wine Library was a warning to others as well and Woot suspended sales to NY and is now trying to figure out their options. Just curious why you say WTSO is specifically involved as well. How do you know that?
And still curious why no response here.