Monday, June 6, 2016

Review: Balletto 2014 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

I really like this estate-bottled Russian River Valley Pinot Noir. The Balletto family started farming on the North Coast in the 1970's and now owns 600 acres of land in Northern California. They sell 90% of their grapes and keep 10% of the best for their own label. It has some of the hallmarks of Russian River Valley Pinot in its floral aromas and velvety mouthfeel. Aromas of lavender, dried rose and wild strawberries lead the way, and in the mouth it shows fresh, lively framboise, coriander spice, subtle forest floor notes and rhubarb pie flavors. Maybe the finish is a tad short. I appreciate the wine's elegance, but a little more length would take it to the next level. I think it's a pretty good value at this price, and a really good example of the amazing quality of Pinot Noir coming from California's North Coast these days. I also appreciate that it isn't complicated by a bunch of unnecessary new oak. Well executed and very enjoyable. ($29) 91 Points

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