That’s right, a new version of our best selling wine ever, Ver. 2.0 if you will, is out and once again something you HAVE to take advantage of. The latest release of the n/v (non-vintage) AUTRE MONDE Pinot Noir is here, and once again it is hands down a remarkable value in Oregon pinot noir, without question delivering way more bang-for-your-buck than any other Oregon pinot you could hope to buy.
It took a few months to get my head around it, though. When I first tasted it shortly after bottling I wasn’t sure about it. It seemed disjointed beyond the usual post-bottle shock, so I put it on the back burner. There it sat until two weeks ago, when I took the time to take its measure. And man, was I shocked. I should’ve known, because no grape has the ability to shape shift in the bottle like pinot noir. Gone were the awkward, funky aromas I detected at first. Now it is all silky smooth, fruit-driven grape juice that goes down so deliciously easy. A blend of approximately 50/50 fruit from the 2012 and 2014 vintages, which would account for it’s bigger fruit character than Ver. 1.0 we blew through last year. Also, this is 100% Chehalem Mountain fruit, and that slightly higher elevation, combined with the warm vintage source, has done this beauty all kinds of good. The rich, ripe fruit which is redolent of cherry, plum, spice, and hints of Spanish cocoa…I know, sounds odd but last night I got this memory jarring cocoa/cinnamon thing off it…is perfectly off set by fine tannins that give it weight and structure with a pop of brisk acid keeping it bright and fresh on the finish. To my palate, at this point in its evolution it is a more complete, slightly higher quality quaff than the previous release, which believe me is saying a lot!
W and I had another bottle with dinner last night and my spoiled (in a good way, I assure you!) wife who usually likes her pinots with a little age on them and is not afraid to speak her mind on wine related issues, was very smitten with this. I can’t tell you what a validating thing that was! Over the course of the 2 hours I spent with it it really opened up, the fruit becoming sweeter and more intense over that time, which bodes well for drinking over the next 2-5 years. Although at this price ($11 a bottle by the case!!) it is kind of a case of why wait. So bottom line, if you love Oregon pinot and red wines that so totally over-deliver for the $$ it boggles the mind, this is it! And as with the first release, maybe even more emphatically, I can’t recommend this highly enough.
Caveat: only 150 cases are available, and I suspect it is going to gone in short order.