The OLD BRIDGE
At every price level, an outstanding selection of wines chosen by John Hoskins MW
NEW WORLD PINOT NOIR (OVER £15)
2007 ‘LAURÈNE’, Domaine Drouhin. Dundee Hills, Oregon, USA
Alcohol Percentage: 13.5%
Area: Oregon is north of (and therefore cooler than) California. It has proved itself an exciting source of Burgundian style Pinot Noir (though, strangely, not Chardonnay). As in Burgundy, vintage variation, is huge; a wet, mild climate makes consistency difficult. The best results are outstanding, but expensive
Grape Variety: 100% Pinot Noir, fermented with wild yeast, matured in French oak (20% new) for just over a year
Producer: Joseph Drouhin is an important family-owned producer based in Beaune. Current patriarch Robert and his daughter Véronique decided to set up a winery in Oregon, well before the area was fashionable, producing their first vintage in 1988. Laurène is the estate's top wine, named after Véronique Drouhin’s elder daughter
Cellar Potential: 2011 - 2017
Old Bridge Rating: Relatively full and rich for an Oregon Pinot, but retaining the delicacy and under-stated elegance that differentiates the style from (most) California examples. This will only get better and better over the next five years
Press Reviews: 93 Points, 'Burghound' - "A fresh, elegant and complex nose blends both upper and lower register fruit aromas, in particular red currant and plum, along with subtle soil undertones that lead to delicious, detailed and equally complex medium-bodied flavors that possess excellent focus, balance and persistence on the beautifully long finish that displays an attractive touch of austerity. If you wanted to pick nits, you could say that this is not as dense as some prior vintages but I would counter with how lovely this wine is to simply drink, which is what really counts. Well worth your interest."
91 points, Wine Advocate: "Medium ruby-colored, it displays a superb bouquet of smoke, earth notes, cinnamon, allspice, wild cherry, and raspberry. Smooth textured and graceful on the palate, this medium-bodied wine has layers of succulent fruit, lively acidity, plenty of earthy spice notes, moderate tannin, and a lengthy, fruit-filled finish. It will evolve for another 2-3 years and drink well through 2022."
91 Points, Wine Spectator - "Firm in texture, displaying fine tannins around pretty rose petal-accented guava and rhubarb fruit, hinting at cinnamon as the finish extends. Drink now through 2015."
£32.78 per bottle in a mixed case
£31.05 per bottle in an un-mixed case