2010 Sebastopol Hills Pinot Noir

sebastipol_pinotThe 2010 Sebastopol Hills Pinot Noir is a Trader Joe’s ($9.99) exclusive, is a label produced by Owl Ridge Wine Services, a custom wine making facility, who are also related to Owl Ridge Winery, a top notch Russian River Pinot Noir producer. The label indicates only that the grapes are sourced from the Sonoma Coast AVA, but Sebastopol Hills is in the southside of the Russian River AVA which is located inside the Sonoma Coast AVA. There is no information concerning the making of the wine, but Pinot from this area usually sees some French oak aging. The alcohol content is, fairly strong for Pinot, 14.5%.

The color is a pale raspberry red with a clear halo. The nose is mushroom, black cherry, herbs, a touch of vanilla and a little cedar, a solid, complex Pinot Noir nose. This is a slightly fruit forward Pinot, sweet strawberry and cherry upfront, followed by tea and licorice. The mid palate adds a little creamy milk chocolate and plum mixed with a medicinal flavor, a nice mix of smooth and rough. The acidity shows up on the finish and helps it linger for a while.

The Sebastopol Hills Pinot Noir is an extremely solid Pinot Noir, that just happens to sell for $9.99. This is a not a cheap facsimile of a Pinot Noir, it favors fruit over complexity, but it has enough texture, length and complexity to make this a satisfying glass of wine.

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Don’t tell anyone, but there is absolutely no correlation between the cost of wine and the quality of wine.

5 comments on “2010 Sebastopol Hills Pinot Noir

  1. Mary Fuller says:

    How do I buy Sebastopol Hill Pinot online?

  2. Heidi says:

    I bought a bottle of the 2010 tonight at TJ’s on a whim and am really impressed for the price. My bottle is only 13.9% and I’m getting a pretty good balance of earth/mushroom/ forest with the lovely fruit. This is a good buy!

  3. Careful Wine Lover says:

    This Pinot is delicious! I usually get headaches from red and some white wines, so I usually avoid them, but was pleasantly surprised that I did not after a glass with dinner. Not too heavy or light, nicely fruity, with cherry and very mild oak that linger.

  4. Pinot lover says:

    Alas, Sebastopol Hills Pinot Noir is no longer available from TJs. Yet another great wine to disappear from their shelves for whatever bogus reason they can fashion. Ridiculous.

  5. Domaine Dave says:

    The last two grape vintages in Northern California were good for grape quality but low for yield. Rain disrupted harvest, so there are fewer grapes available. There are enough grapes to go around for regular bottlings, but the folks who buy excess grapes have less to choose from and at a higher price. That directly impacts Trader Joe’s, they cannot get the deals they had in the past. It is either raise prices or discontinue these labels until conditions improve.

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