2013 Windy Oaks Estate, Pinot Noir, Proprietor’s Reserve, Schultze Family Vineyard, Santa Cruz Mountains.
Opening up nicely, the Windy Oaks 2013 Proprietor’s Reserve, is becoming an elegant and beautiful Pinot Noir full of flavor and class with graceful detail and enchanting layers, this is one of my favorites in the lineup from this tiny Corralitos based winery that specializes in Burgundy style Pinot Noir. I’ve been a fan of Jim Schultze’s wines since the 1999 vintage, a wine that captured my heart with it’s remarkable Chambolle-Musigny like character, and this 2013 version reminds why I so admire these wines, while denser in fruit and richer on the palate, it has those Cote de Nuits qualities, but also now the vines have age on them shows it’s own sense of place and terroir. From the original 1.5 acre Bay Block, the 2013 Proprietor’s Reserve captures the cool climate and Monterey Bay influence with vibrant energy, with the clonal material not giving deep pigment, but instead allowing wonderful class and texture as well as a balanced mixture of floral perfume and savory/earthy tones with a touch of pure saline. This 2013 starts with wilted rose petal, crushed distilled violets, blueberry and kirschwasser along with a hint of smoky sweet oak and a faint trace of bacon before setting course on a medium bodied palate of bing cherry, raspberry, wild plum and red peach fruits. There’s a touch of underbrush, cinnamon, briar and cola bean in the background and the lingering finish adds a framboise and strawberry element to the core fruits as well as a bit of tea and orange zest, all seamlessly forming a gorgeous complete wine that both thrills and calms you at the same time. While the 2014 feel more generous and drink extremely well, this 2013 looks to slowly eclipse them, this brilliant wine could even get better still, be patient, best from 2018 to 2024.
($65 Est.) 94 Points, grapelive

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