TNs: Visit To Anthill Farms To Taste Their 2011s and More...

Last week, a group of us trekked up to Anthill in Dry Creek to meet Anthony, the winemaker, and Jennifer (formerly of Copain). I have been wanting to try these wines for a long time, having seen some other comments posted about them, their style and intrigued to see what I would find. I went in with no pre-disposition, as I had not much experience with them. We tasted in one of the big steel barns in the large cluster of wineries that is up in Dry Creek, off the road north of the Dry Creek Market.

From what I could tell, Anthony let us have at all the 2011s, a few 2010s, and then at the end, we went into a couple of barrels. I really enjoyed the visit and walked away with yet another positive view of the 2011 vintage. Both the Tina Marie and Campbell Ranch were terrific, with the latter outstanding for my palate, a wine I will be purchasing for the cellar. Well, the Tina Marie, too, but the Campbell is the MVP of the two. I also enjoyed the 2010 Knez Demuth, another wine I will purchase.

Folks, there are great wines in 2011, and for as much as I can, I will continue to write about them and offer one voice for consideration. Anthill has done a nice job. Thanks for reading.

  • 2010 Knez Winery Chardonnay Demuth Vineyard - USA, California, North Coast, Anderson Valley (4/7/2013)
    Lemon curd, lime, tangerine and a spicy finish. Some glossier tone to the fruit too, although this was not a big alc wine.

  • 2010 Knez Winery Pinot Noir Cerise Vineyard - USA, California, North Coast, Anderson Valley (4/7/2013)
    Poured next to the Knez Demuth of the same vintage, I preferred that wine over this Cerise. There is a jammier quality here, and Anthony the winemaker who was pouring the wine for us, indicated that this Cerise was picked more ripe, although I think he said a 1/2 brix more. Not much, but i offer that as context. Strawberry jam, red apple, more broad in texture than the Demuth, too.

  • 2010 Knez Winery Pinot Noir Demuth Vineyard - USA, California, North Coast, Anderson Valley (4/7/2013)
    I starred this wine in my notes, as I really enjoyed this bottle. Floral, in the raspberry profile with good tannin, clovey cherry, and what I remember distinctly as a rose petal quality, although there was talk around the tasting table about ‘carnation’ being a similar floral note in the palate. For me, a dried rose petal, that is also consistent visually with lighter rose color of the wine. Some vanilla and root beer in the finish, along with red apple. It has an Anderson Valley signature, true to the place and I will buy this–really dig this wine, a find.

  • 2011 Anthill Farms Pinot Noir Abbey-Harris Vineyard - USA, California, North Coast, Anderson Valley (4/7/2013#
    Tasted with Anthony, up at the winery. Man, this is tannic. He says the conditions really affect the skins of these grapes, causing it to thicken and react to where it grows. Of all the 2011s we tasted with him, this was the tightest to me, really standing out. Juicy, lean red fruits and strawberry. Will need time to settle down and will be an ager, one to taste again in a year to see where it is headed.

  • 2011 Anthill Farms Pinot Noir Campbell Ranch Vineyard - USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast #4/7/2013)
    Uh, this is a winner by god and will hit my list as yet another WOTY candidate, and to all the poop about 2011 being this and that…forget the critics. There is a boysen quality to this wine, and what Alan Rath who tasted with us, called a “black tea” note. Black raspberry, zesty, lithe and juicy. Then it finished with blueberry, raspberry and rocky notes. At about 5 hours of air, I took this bottle to dinner and drained off the last glass, and it was even better, with a tangy fruit, that same razzy berry and just fantastic. This is fantastic, classy.

  • 2011 Anthill Farms Pinot Noir Demuth Vineyard - USA, California, North Coast, Anderson Valley (4/7/2013)
    Added to the database, looks like I am first one into the mix here. I tasted this next to the 2010 Knez Demuth and I will say, I like that wine more. Here, I perceive a darker and denser wine, with raspberry hard candy, juicy and good acid, just a darker quality.

  • 2011 Anthill Farms Pinot Noir Tina Marie Vineyard - USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley (4/7/2013)
    This is good. Juicy red fruits, kiwi, with refreshing acids, a ligher color and some caramel from the new oak (I think 30%) framing the finish. There is terrific balance and even tone here. Red apple is in the core of this wine, which would have led me to think Anderson Valley. Finishes with a stony quality and really nice.

  • 2011 Anthill Farms Syrah Sonoma Coast - USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast (4/7/2013)
    I don’t believe this is released yet, as I have added it here to the database. This is a wine of contrast. Aromatically, this is striking in the black pepper notes, like taking fresh black peppercorns, placing them into a grinder, and then twisting the grinds into the aromatic of the wine. Really a signature. Yet, the fruit is an easy drinker, soft. At $22, this could be a wine where you sit down and show someone what cool climate CA syrah can be, then have some food and let it rip.

  • 2011 Comptche Ridge Vineyards Pinot Noir - USA, California, North Coast, Mendocino County (4/7/2013)
    I had to add this wine to the database, and given the bottle was a shiner, it’s on the early side here. Juicy and spicy, with raspberry, some pepper, stony and black cherry. Good mix of black and red fruit.

Posted from CellarTracker

What’s the story on Knez?

Just a lesser known label of for Anthony. Less press, so more availability.

Dang Frank, I had Campbell and Tina Marie 1-2 as well. Really nice wines of completely different profiles.
So that was Jennifer Derrick? I had only corresponded with her via email before she left Copain.

That would make three of us on the Campbell Ranch and Tina Marie