Willowbrook is a relatively new producer of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines, and if this bottling is any judge, it’s certainly one to watch.
Right out of the gate this Pinot comes on strong. If you’re looking for a lighter, Beaujolais-style Pinot, you’ve come to the wrong place. This Kastania Vineyard (in the southern part of Sonoma County, near the Pacific Ocean in the region called the Sonoma Coast) Pinot Noir is a flavor-packed monster, full of traditional Pinot black cherry flavors and an air that I can only describe as “of the forest.” Willowbrook says currant, coffee, and cola tones. I’d add cedar and blueberry to the mix, too. The cedar is particularly pronounced. It’s almost like someone stirred the wine with a Christmas tree.
The wine benefits greatly from a few minutes in the glass before you drink it. At first, the flavor profile can be overwhelming, and a little air in the glass helps it mellow. Sample it to get a sense of what you’re in for, then let it breathe in the glass for five minutes. Perfect Pinot!
Willowbrook makes several other bottlings as well; I’m looking forward to trying them all!
A / $48 / willowbrookcellars.com
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- Tasting Report: Family Winemakers of California, August 2009
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