I’m visiting their Sebastapol facility next week. I’ve seen their wines on some esteemed wine lists and have checked out them out online, seems pretty cool. Wondering if anyone here has tried the wines?
Yeah they were good but not super remarkable for me. A bit living off the name.
I’m the exact opposite. I LOVE the wines. Easily the best wine that I’ve had that came out of the IPOB craze. Wines are super nuanced, and I’m really excited to see how they age. If you like a more Burgundian style, you will love it. If you want 2012 KB Russian River Pinot, you’ll be disappointed.
I’m more in the former camp, so stylistically they are of interest. Thanks for the feedback. I’ll try to post some notes.
Funny, I was about to post a separate TN thread for tonight’s dinner wine, but after spotting this I’ll just post it here.
TN: Raen 2015 Fort-Ross Seaview ‘Homefield’ Pinot Noir - The most striking thing about this wine is its texture and lightness of touch, without sacrificing the complexity and nuance of Pinot Noir.
I am firmly with Ian here. I am far more likely to reach for Burgundy over domestic Pinot, and I love this wine. It definitely shows the more intense fruit of the New World, but there’s also no lack of structure, acid or intensity. This wine makes my short list for the “Prove that America can make truly great Pinot Noir” challenge.
Aromas of blackerry, raspberry, smoke and stones. Very faint hints of wildflowers and herbs that I bet will show more with age.
In the mouth, plenty of youthful intensity from the acidity, but the fruit is lush without being fat or too ripe. A wine with plenty of middle grip, where you roll the wine between your tongue and the top of your mouth and keep doing so even after swallowing because the flavors are still building. Excellent length.
You can argue with the price, but not the quality. There aren’t many comparably priced American Pinots I would prefer.
Jim, nice note, thanks for posting. Sounds right in my wheelhouse… I’m really looking forward to the visit.
I’ve purchased several of them off of wine lists and have always enjoyed them. They definitely show the whole cluster, which I don’t mind at all, but they have a great vibrancy and backbone that makes them pair wonderfully with food.
Clarice Wine Company
Has anyone had the Raen Chardonnay before?
I visited last week, but they were sold out of Chardonnay. Just tasted the 2016 Pinot Noirs.
Ok, was there a big difference between their single vineyard pinot’s? I ordered a bottle of the Fort Ross pinot 2016, not sure what to expect. Most of my drinking experience with pinots have been in the bigger style, Kistler, Occidental, Sea Smoke, etc.
Today I had the Raen Fort Ross 2016 Pinot Noir and I agree with Ian statement. Great wine, made in a burgundian style.
Yes, had it last week. I liked it quite a bit, Burgundian again, but not as drinkable now as the Pinots appear to be. Reminds me a little bit of Morgen Long from Oregon, but pricier. I suspect you really need to hold this back.
I bought some of the 2016 Royal St. Robert Cuvee from my local shop to have a try. I also took a few bottles of the Occidental Freestone (Steve Kistler’s wine). I look at the Occidental as a “cocktail Pinot” with less food friendliness than the Raen. I enjoyed the Raen in its idiom. I don’t get all the fuss about having to call things Burgundian. I don’t see it and don’t need to. I don’t expect either of these to age as their higher-acid counterparts from elsewhere in the world would. I like them now and will drink by age 10 if I don’t lose them in the cellar somewhere.
I do have a visceral negative reaction to the Raen labels. Yuck.
Love RAEN! Havent had the chard or rose yet, but been a fan of the PN since first vintage.
I also had a glass of the Occidental Elizabeth Cuvee 2015 and agree with your statement of being a “cocktail Pinot”. I actually enjoyed the Raen Fort Ross more and I’m a Kistler fan, maybe the Occidental needs more time.
I want to try the Raen Occidental and also their St Robert Cuvee.
Joe, on the 2016’s the Freestone Home Field has brighter red fruit intensity and the 2016 Occidental Bodega is darker and more brooding. To me, the overall style of the wines is earthier and more classically-styled than many CA Pinot Noirs, even of a similar style. I agree with Ian’s sentiment.
Stylistically, the wines are going to have a leaner elegance compared with those you’ve mentioned, less rich, but their earthy complexity and structure may appeal to you. I’m a fan of this style over the bigger style, but you may want to taste or just try a bottle as a test drive. Cheers!
Joe, upon further reading it appears you beat me to the punch. Glad you liked it. Cheers!
Thank you Matt. I’m debating if I should just skip the Raen Occidental Bodega and purchase more of the Fort Ross. Did you try the Cuvee? If so, is it as bright on the fruit side as the Fort Ross?