TN: 2007 Rhys Pinot Noir Skyline Vineyard

After kicking myself for drinking the 2007 Rhys Pinot Noir Home Vineyard too early, I went on to drink a bottle of the 2007 Rhys Pinot Noir Skyline Vineyard yesterday evening in Palo Alto. Maybe not as bad a decision as it might have been, since the Skyline was drinking beautifully, even if maturity promises something even better.

What a difference in style here, with the Home showing darker fruit, greater weight, and a much spicier mid-palate than the ultra-suave, utterly weightless 2007 Skyline. Here the nose is dominated by red fruited perfume which give way to dusty aromas along with a touch of Vosne-Romanee Oriental spice on the aromatic finish. In the mouth, the sensation is (again) of weightlessness and astonishing purity, with an almost creamy mouthfeel from the red currant flavors. The ripe fruit is in perfect balance with the acidity which brings out the mineral elements on the long, gentle finish. The presentation here is very much one of elegance and suavity, to the point where a comparison with a Vosne-Romanee (with perhaps an extra touch of Chambolle minerality) does not seem all that far-fetched.

i’m so envious seeing everyone break into these young bottles of rhys.

great note. i’ve not tried the skyline yet. when do you see this entering maturity?

Patience my friend…patience.

I’m not. I’m thankful. Keeps my curiosity at bay. [wink.gif]

Thanks for the note Carl. I thought this needed more time when I tried it in December. I don’t see it as a long term wine but a couple more years would help it come together better.

Now, kick yourself with the other foot.

My thought on this wine from 2008, and I might even have said it out loud, was a Chambolle made by a Vosne producer. Like Mugneret but not a Chambolle like Barthod or Mugnier and not a Vosne like Meo.

Great minds and all that.

I’m notoriously undisciplined when it comes to properly aging my wines. However …

Rhys, along with Dehlinger and Windy Oaks are the few producers that I seriously age. I’ve been buying since the first release and I’ve consumed one Rhys - an 04 Family Farm. (along with many Alesias)

I have a lot of great drinking ahead of me!!! [tease.gif]

Mike - you really should open an '04 chard. I may kill my last bottle tomorrow night with some sauteed soft shell crabs. I opened my other bottle last summer and it was the best CA chard I have had.

That wine (2008) is just sick its so good.
This is the vineyard, IMO, to lead pinot in the states to grand cru status.
Best, Jim

I think Jim is on to something here. Seriously.

I haven’t tried the Skyline yet either, but this is seriously tempting me!


Thanks for the note. I am letting mine sleep a little longer but thanks to WetRock I did get to taste in December. I noted this was a big pinot done right. I’ll hold off another 18 months before I try again.


Even when tasted next to the other superb 08 Rhys, the Skyline stood out for me. It had those “holy grail” characteristics of extreme flavor concentration combined with stony minerality, energy and nuance. It had a spicy complexity and laser focus.

And Kevin and the team are still tinkering with this very young vineyard!

Thanks for the note Carl. I haven’t opened this one yet, but you are tempting me. As for all the notes on the 08, I didn’t think those had been released yet?

[quote=“M. Dildine”]…It had those “holy grail” characteristics of extreme flavor concentration combined with stony minerality, energy and nuance. It had a spicy complexity and laser focus. …

+1000. The 08 was the first Skyline I tasted and I was very impressed. My tasting note on it emphasized the flintiness, firm acidic and tannic structure, and super precision.

I’m really hoping that my allocation for 08 will include all the bottlings. Last time I had to play the wishlist lotto. [cheers.gif]

Tasting the 2007 about a year ago, I would have to say that I would be hard pressed to pick out a favorite among the higher altititude Pinot (did not try the 2007 Swan Terrace). I guess I would have chosen the Alpine and Skyline as my two favorites, very slightly above the Horseshoe (again, no Swan Terrace from 2007, although we did taste the 2006).