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01.20.2004

2001 Martinelli Pinot Noir - Bondi Home Ranch

I'm gradually finding more and more wines that are made by Helen Turley, and and in the process, it's clear that she has a very particular style that expresses itself no matter what varietal she's playing with. In a word: fruit. She seems to be interested in taking the flavors of whatever grape she's working and turning it up a notch. Her fruit goes to 11.

Having had her cultish, hard-to-find Zinfandels, I was interested to see what she would do with this Pinot Noir from Martinelli.

Tasting Notes:
Right out of the bottle this was a very closed and leathery wine, which showed a lot of complexity with a good nose of sage and fruit, but was not horribly impressive. One hour later, it was a completely different wine. I've never experienced such an opening up in a relatively young Pinot. Halfway through dinner this wine had turned into a total fruit bomb of chocolate, cherries, and "powerful mellowing agents." Very unexpected, and I felt, ultimately, over the top in its expression.

Food Pairing:
Well, I ate it with some Unagi nigiri, but if I were making a recommendation I'd say pork chops with applejack cream.

Overall score: 7.5

How much?: $43

I don't get the impression that this wine is very hard to find, relative to the Turley Zins.

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