Pure, clear even-colored transparent light ruby, pinking to a wide clear rim with nary a touch of garnet. Pitchy praline and wet fern crowd the thick fruit, dragging it along like an old shovel in a dank barn, past the tightly closed stalls, popping berries from a handful picked quickly at the small thicket where the water always drips from the iron spigot and makes a little puddle. Thin mountain smoke clears out the fruit-leather portion of the concentration, allowing more of the bright clarity to outshine the musk and dull mint.
Apparently, Donald Patz is back on the Pinot wagon. And you should probably pay attention.
In the mouth, a clean, bright fruit-simple entry quickly becomes gold-plated as it magnetically attracts savory layers from all directions. Fruit round and full but not too ripe, bright cranberry plum, mandarin orange, sweet and thin and ethereal and continually building before there’s this life-stopping pause, that stall-peak weightlessness, that flash-before-your-eyes freezing of time for what seems an eternity of dead silence before a pile of beautiful green-briar, match-head and shrill, grapefruit and coffee-grounds are unleashed on your palate. Chewy and dense all the way through, but never overbearing; clean and delicious throughout.
This is not a huge massive ripe California fruit-bomb Pinot. This is not a lean & mean Oregon or Burg Villages–although it kinda remind me of Aloxe-Corton. It doesn’t smash you in the face with Burgundy and doesn’t insult you with California. This is a beautiful Pinot. It reminds me a lot of Dehlinger–and if you know me, that is high praise. Very well done.
2017 MARITANA Pinot Noir ‘Le Russe’ RRV Sonoma County 13.5