That Pinot Gris looks like it would be a challenge to fit into a packed wine fridge.
It’s been a while and I don’t know these particular vintages but FWIW, I have always enjoyed Handley’s pinots, both gris and noir. Probably shouldn’t be stockpiling more wine at the moment but I am seriously considering it!
What’s the drinking window on the Pinot Noir?
Heard good things about their Pinot Noir, but can anyone tell me if a 29.5% (approx) discount is a good deal for these wines? There’s just a lot of real good wine going for 30%+ off of retail. Any thoughts?
A big hello to all of you Wooters…Andrea here from Handley Cellars. We are very excited about this Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris offering because these two wines represent the best of the Anderson Valley. If you hop in your car in San Francisco and drive about three hours north and then west, you will find us tucked away in a stunningly beautiful valley that has a lot of character (and lots of characters too). Our location,about 10 miles from the Pacific Ocean, creates a fabulous grape-growing venue. We are all about warm days and cool nights with plenty of ocean breezes thrown in for balance… And, don’t forget about that morning and evening fog. This place is amazing. If you like beautiful aromatics and complex layers of flavors, these wines should tickle your fancy.
Hi Andrea! We’re glad you could stop by on this late summer evening. The winery sounds wonderful.
In that case I recommend straight into the ice bucket on those warm summer days/nights and then your glass…refreshing!
thank you for the welcome…not so warm here. The fog came in and it is downright chilly tonight!
I think it depends on what flavor profiles you prefer in a wine…Do you prefer fresher fruit flavors or do you enjoy more of the dried fruit and tea leaf nuances in a more mature Pinot Noir? Handley Pinot Noirs age well in general. This particular vintage has some structure. It is really showing well now, but I think it could age for a few more years. Let’s let Kristen weigh in on that tomorrow.
First time labrat reporting for duty!
I was very excited to unbox this offering at work and discover it was a white varietal as I’ve been laden with reds and its summertime; I should be relaxing with a white! That said, I ask for forgiveness as I just started antibiotics for a sinus infection today, so my super nose is letting me down just a tad. To ensure a level playing field I enlisted the help of my roommate and our de-facto go to Pinot, Santa Margherita, as a yardstick. With that out of the way on to my sampling of the 2009 Handley Pinot Gris:
Color: A nice crystal clear, almost pale lemon color. Surprisingly I’d swear I saw a few bubbles (I’ll get to this aspect in a minute). In other news this is a white wine.
Nose: very pleasant if not a tiny bit muted; it was not as forward as the SM, but I felt it developed more and was pretty darn pleasing. Smooth and not overly sweet, the nose was actually almost reminiscent of a viognier. I did get the pineapple described, as well as a bit of kiwi (!), and a touch of fresh cut sweet hay. I felt like I could pick up a bit of minerality but couldn’t quite identify it with my broken super nose, and my roommate did not get it at all. Not too much in the way of floral notes, though maybe a dab of honeysuckle.
Mouthfeel: The acidity is not overwhelming, it balances well with the tropical sweetness to my taste. There is an immediate, almost carbonic hit on the tongue when you first sip, and I swear I saw a few bubbles of CO2 in the glass when I agitated it… I actually liked this aspect but my roommate was not a fan of this. This goes from a really nice crisp/light sipper when a bit cold to a light/medium wine with a few minutes to warm up a touch.
Tongue Tingling Taste: Tropical fruit are definitely present; a tart almost key lime flavor washes over your palette as your first cold swish swirls around. The sweetness is a bit more present in the mouth than on the nose, but again to my taste not overwhelming. The wine stood up well paired with my bow-tie pasta with tomato, chicken, and a bit of fresh cut dried cayenne… I was worried the spice might overwhelm a pinot but it stood up just fine… though I wish I had some sea bass to try it with as I feel a white fish would make a better pairing. Compared with the SM I felt like the Handley was slightly bolder but a touch less complex… honestly I’ll accept less complexity for a balance of crisp refreshingness. The relatively high alcohol content is not overpowering to my taste, I would have guessed it somewhere around 13.6-13.9%.
I enjoyed this Pinot quite a bit, and have half a bottle left to sample tomorrow. I plan to match it up with some camembert (a customary snack) and a few apple slices, and I may put it up against a bottle of Triacipedis and the Minotaur’s Chalice for a further point of reference. I feel like a bit of oxygen could help balance the wine slightly, but I’ll update tomorrow evening when I find out.
My Verdict: As the cheaper of the bottles in this offering, I think this Pinot Gris still stands up admirably. It’s worth a shot if you’re bored with what your local offers or if you like a sharp honeyed white on a hot summer’s day. I’m not a through-and-through white wine guy, so I probably wouldn’t buy it by the case, but I’d put it in my rotation. If I hadn’t just bought 6 bottles of X Pinot Nior on Tuesday I’d “no-brainer” buy this to try the Pinot Nior given that I liked the Pinot Gris. I’ll wait to see what the other labrats say about the Nior though given our incompetent politicians may put a further squeeze on my wallet next week.
My Roommate’s Verdict (for what it’s worth, after some libation): “Tropical, pineapple, with a hint of nepotism on the nose.” =P
Oh, and lassow is right, the bottle is too tall to fit on the shelf in my fridge. That’s all for now from the East Coast, I better sleep before work! I’ll update tomorrow with any notable developments and I hope this has been an informative first labrat experience. Cheers!
Hola, well, Kristen here and still up:) I was thinking that the PN seems to be tasting lovely just now. And with the cool climate flavors of this particular vintage, it could also age gracefully for 2-4 years.
this promotion price is better than our Cellar Club price…and, we do not discount this Pinot Noir for our retail accounts, so it is a great opportunity…
Hey everyone, what a surprise to see our favorite winery on woot!
We have been “cellar club” members for a few years. While I do not partake of wine, my wife enjoys hers, and the quarterly shipments are a very nice regular surprise to come home to! I also buy a case (or two) of the pinot noir for her every christmas. We love them and hope to take a trip to visit one day.
From a first time lab rat. And I’m scared because I’m not a blogger, in general. I try to keep my opinions to myself…
I tried the Pinot Noir last night and will try it again tonight and will post a “Day 2” observation. First off, please forgive my pedestrian wine language. I’m not a sommelier and while I love and drink wine, I don’t know all the proper language.
The bottom line, which I’ll put close to the top, is that this is a DEAL. The two bottles Pinot Noir alone would probably cost about the asking price of the three.
But, about the Pinot Noir DAY I:
On the nose - cherries? Berries? It’s subtle - doesn’t knock you over the head.
Palate: Jeez, here I go. Okay, so the finish was smooth. Soft. (can I say soft?) There’s acid too, but not too much, not too little - quite balanced. The alcohol seems high for a Pinot - over 14%. So, there’s a more body that I’d expect in a Pinot. It’s delicious. I’m buying the 3-pack, after tasting it. Well worth it.
I drank this alone (yes, I was alone, but so was the wine - I didn’t pair it with anything - I was too excited). I will try it with a couple of cheeses tonight.
I have no idea what else to say without sounding like a plebe.
Good morning everyone!
My wife and I had the honor to be a first-time lab rat for the Handley Cellars Pinot Gris.
We were both excited to see that it was a nice white wine, perfect for a beautiful Minnesota summer evening.
As soon as it was opened I put it in the fridge to chill so we could enjoy it with supper.
When first opened it had nice fruity aroma; quite appealing. I poured us each a glass and the fun began. The first taste was very pleasing to the palette. The first taste revealed a nice fruity undertone on top of a smooth mild-bodied wine. I seemed to latch onto a slight bit of a peach taste. The wine also had a perfect sweetness to it. It was neither sugary nor dry, but very enjoyable!
As we enjoyed the wine with our supper, we both mentioned that is seemed it had a hint of carbonation or fizz to it. It definitely wasn’t bubbly like champagne, but there seemed to be something there.
The wine was enjoyed during dinner and even more enjoyed during a beautiful evening outside by the fire.
Overall, the wine was very good. A nice white wine that was not dry or too sweet. It has a nice fruity peach undertone and was a pleasure to drink. It was an easy wine to enjoy and I hope to have more in the future!
Thanks Hadley Cellars!
We noticed that too when we tasted the wine last night. There seems to be a subtle carbonation to it. I was glad to see I wasn’t making it up!
FIRST TIME LAB RAT REPORT:
I haven’t been super active in the wine.woot community so I was a bit surprised (pleasantly so) to be selected as a lab rat for the Pinot Noir! I received the wine yesterday evening when I returned home and haven’t had a chance to taste it yet - but will do so over the weekend and report back.
One issue on the slight fizziness noted on the Pinot Gris bottles from the other lab rats - I tend not to drink a bottle for a week or two after it’s been shipped, as I believe in bottle shock from all the banging around during shipment. I’ve had wines, both red and white, that were overly fizzy right after shipment.
I recognize this defeats the purpose of the Lab Rat program, but it is a limitation IMO.
In any event, I look forward to this experiment and will report back!
Pinot Noir is probably nice. Not sure why folks leave rs in varieties like Gewurzt or Riesling or Pinot Gris… Too bad. I’d be in for one or two if the white was dry. .27 is sweet= less than refreshing that dry… IMHO