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  • 2008 Rivers-Marie - Pinot Noir Occidental Ridge Vineyard

2008 Rivers-Marie - Pinot Noir Occidental Ridge Vineyard

UNITED STATES / CALIFORNIA / SONOMA
  • 92 IWC
  • Variety
    Pinot Noir
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SKU: 196837-2008
  • International Wine Cellar | Rating: 92

    ($45) Good deep red-ruby. Musky, smoky aromas of ripe strawberry and spices, lifted by a note of orange zest. In a warmer style but with firm acidity giving lift and perfume to the flavors of dark raspberry, violet and licorice. Finishes quite juicy. Brown describes this as a low-pH wine from a warm site. This was the first pinot vineyard he harvested in 2008, picking in mid-September at 14.3% potential alcohol.
    Author: Stephen Tanzer
    Issue: May/June 2010
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  • "Perhaps the finest California pinot I have ever had the pleasure of tasting," says Allen Meadows in 2006. And that was enough for Rivers Marie to catch fire throughout an ever-increasing cult of Pinotphiles.

    However, the story of Rivers-Marie begins with Thomas Brown, a native of South Carolina who caught the wine bug travelling through Europe as a twenty-something. He found his way to Napa Valley and learned under the tutelage of Ehren Jordan at Turley Wine Cellars. Years later, after becoming a consulting winemaker for more than a dozen wineries, Brown was connected with Scott Zeller, owner of Summa vineyard, and subsequently asked if he wanted some fruit.

    From there, Thomas Rivers Brown and his wife, Genevieve Marie Welsh took advantage of their golden opportunity to make awesome Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir. In the debut vintage of 2002, Summa vineyard was Brown's only source of Pinot Noir, but he soon expanded to other vineyards near Occidental, including Occidental Ridge. Now, in addition to producing some of the most sought-after and critically acclaimed Pinot Noir, the pair also produces Sonoma Coast Chardonnay and Howell Mountain Cabernet.

    California is the heartland of wine production in the US, and the state that brought prestige to American wine thanks to the pioneers who built early wineries like Staglin, Beringer, Ridge, Mayacamas and Chateau Montelena in the 1800s. Its large geographic area ensures a great diversity in growing sites, varieties grown, and quality levels. Generalizations about the state's wines have numerous exceptions; however, a few key facts generally hold true—ample sunshine, dry weather during the growing season, and moderate winters prevail. Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon continue to dominate the state's production—albeit in continually smaller percentages, as growers continue to diversify. More than 100 different varieties can be found throughout the state.

    Collector Data For This Wine

    • 273 bottles owned
    • 99 collectors