2013SaladinPN2013 Saladin cellars, Pinot Noir, La Cruz Vineyard, Sonoma Coast.
The new Saladin Pinot Noir from Keller Estate’s La Cruz Vineyard in the southwest end of the Petaluma Gap is youthfully lush, decedent and richly flavored, made in a modern style that fans of Kosta Browne, Black Kite, Walter Hansel and Sojourn will love. This Saladin release, is their first Pinot Noir, they make a Dunn inspired Howell Mountain Cabernet and bottled a fresh stainless steel aged Pinot Gris from La Cruz as well, and certainly all the wines deserve merit and attention, especially this Pinot Noir made from ripe grapes, de-stemmed and aged in a mix of new and neutral French oak. The 2013 Saladin La Cruz comes in at about 14.5% and has lots of texture, and is very hedonistic without feeling over weight or ponderous with good fresh acidity, coming from this cool and windswept site that allows slow ripening and deep color development, for a first time effort this Pinot comes out a solid offering and a winner. I tasted through the same vintage Sojourn recently as well, all rated between 90 and 95 Points by Parker and this Saladin was right there with them step by step, in fact I honestly would score this one a couple of ticks higher myself. The Saladin La Cruz starts with sweet raspberry, currants and dusty mocha notes with hints of floral tones and vanilla leading to a palate of black cherry, plum and cranberry fruits along with tea, clove, juicy red peach, mineral/stony elements and creamy soft wood (supple tannins) and Christmas spices, everything is still coming together here, I think more restraint and class will show up with bottle age, the oak notes will fold in and play a backseat framing and complex secondary elements will emerge with patience. This will be a very limited release, and looks set to be offered direct, but worth checking out and making the extra effort to find it, drink from 2016 to 2020, this has impressive form and style and is pure Californian in nature, this is well made Pinot that makes the grade and then some.
($45 Est.) 91+ Points, grapelive

By admin