TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

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Brian G r a f s t r o m
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TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#1 Post by Brian G r a f s t r o m » September 6th, 2019, 12:12 pm

2011 J. Rochioli Pinot Noir River Block - USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley (8/8/2019)
-- popped and poured –
-- tasted non-blind over 3 hours on Day 1; revisited on Day 4 after recorking and refrigerating --

NOSE: expressive, "cool" aromas of crushed raspberry, blueberry, and a hint of pine; fruity; not funky or earthy; no alcohol noticeable initially, but it did become a touch fumey after being open for a couple hours; quite nice, but for the hint of alcohol.

BODY: medium-full bodied; blood red color of medium depth with slight bricking throughout; fine particulate matter present.

TASTE: ripe; glossy; medium-low acidity; plush red fruits; a little oaky; probably best to drink now and over the next few years, but *maybe* this sails on its fruit beyond that; the alcohol and oak give me some pause re: extended ageing, however. Better on Day 4 --- less fruity, and now a touch earthy; revising my drink window to Now – 2029, with best drinking perhaps starting in 2 or 3 years. Revising score up from 90 to 91 on Day 4.

50, 5, 12, 16, 8 = (91 pts.)
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Re: TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#2 Post by Anton D » September 6th, 2019, 12:27 pm

Nice note!

I prefer the coolness of "yin" wines and agree with you about Rochioli.
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Re: TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#3 Post by Brian G r a f s t r o m » September 6th, 2019, 12:33 pm

This bottle makes me wonder if I prefer Rochioli in "off" vintages. What's your experience/preference, Anton?
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Re: TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#4 Post by Anton D » September 6th, 2019, 12:54 pm

Brian G r a f s t r o m wrote:
September 6th, 2019, 12:33 pm
This bottle makes me wonder if I prefer Rochioli in "off" vintages. What's your experience/preference, Anton?
You know, that's fascinating.

Looking back, I think I agree with you (and I often agree with your tasting notes. I suspect some palate overlap.)

I think the 2008 array generally is delicious...no smoke and one of the more "less big" years. I like them better than the 2009s, now that you mention it. Actually, I think the early '00 years were generally of this type, as well. (2005 is on our happy list, as well.)

I don't know temperature data, I don't know if I am a 'cooler vintage' person, or not. I better look some stuff up and see.

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Re: TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#5 Post by Brian G r a f s t r o m » September 6th, 2019, 1:08 pm

I'd be curious to hear if investigation reveals anything in particular. Frustratingly, my experience with Rochioli starts with 2009s. Years ago, I tasted a bottle of West Block from '97, I think --- and wasn't that an off vintage? --- immediately signed-up for the list, waited forever, then started buying when my name came up. Bought blind for a couple years, popped a couple 09s, and didn't really like them. Eventually stopped buying their Pinots. Recently-ish stopped buying the whites, too. Surprisingly, I continue to get offers despite not having purchased for what seems like at least a couple years.
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Re: TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#6 Post by b. c@stner » September 6th, 2019, 6:15 pm

2011 Sweetwater pinot popped at a tailgate yesterday. Bears / Packers. Great tailgate. Not so great outcome. No detailed notes. But the Sweetwater is in a very nice place right now. About 1/3 of a bottle left for tonight, hasn't lost a step.
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Re: TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#7 Post by Anton D » September 7th, 2019, 11:46 am

We popped and poured a 2011 West Block pinot last night and it was fresh and lovely.

Delicate structure, but held up well with a rib eye and baked potato. Still vibrant red fruit and that thing I love about pinot - that difficult to describe aromatic quality that is just not quite part of this world. Still with a primary and secondary bouquet....floral.

At the very end, a touch a rhubarb/strawberry and violet...you could almost have guessed a faint trace of merlot in the mix, but I know that's wrong.

We took about three hours with it and it did not change much over that time.

I agree with Brian's drinking window. No downside in the near term!

Thanks for starting this thread! It motivated me!

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Re: TN: 2011 Rochioli - Pinot Noir River Block (USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley)

#8 Post by Bryan Price » September 11th, 2019, 8:43 pm

b. c@stner wrote:
September 6th, 2019, 6:15 pm
2011 Sweetwater pinot popped at a tailgate yesterday. Bears / Packers. Great tailgate. Not so great outcome. No detailed notes. But the Sweetwater is in a very nice place right now. About 1/3 of a bottle left for tonight, hasn't lost a step.
Are you drinking this at the ACTUAL tailgate?!! Never seen anyone pop a wine before, but why not?
Life's too short to drink bad wine.

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