The new releases from Dr. Pinot are always a pleasure. The artist formerly known as Patz & Hall has deep roots in Russian River Valley, and ALL his new labels are phenomenal quality. Since “retirement”, his Maritana bottlings have continued to carry the torch for RRV Pinot and Chard. Not a trace of garnet on this one: all purple-ruby transparency. Easy, dusky nose of smoky briar: a wet-leaves smudge-fire drifting casually from the curb, accenting pine-sap and dirty, rich cherry fruit. Almost Syrah-like in density of berry, there is still no mistaking the match-head and funky graphite glory of Pinot Noir, including copious floral tendencies. Little Euro-barnyard on this one, the richness of California and clairvoyance of Russian River Valley splendor shines on and on, un-deterred by too much earthy musk.
Tasting it grants distinct, acidic raspberry and pomegranate seed abrasiveness generously to all receptors: clean, pure fruit with a lightness of body entry and over-the-middle, while dense black concentration soak in to the sides of the tongue. Orange zest and peach fuzz dominate, and the whole package is razor-tight and focused on supple purity, glowing dark berry with air and resolving into plentiful tannin. I love the raspiness and structure, the fruit will take a couple years to exude pure-pinot expression, right now it is just an elegant young drop finding its way.
2019 MARITANA Pinot Noir Five Wells VYD Russian River Valley Sonoma 13.0