Iron Horse embodies everything I like about Sonoma county. Leaving aside the Sonoma vs. Napa debate for future flogging, suffice it to say that a visit to Iron Horse outside of Sebastopol will refresh your faith in the ideas of good people, good land, good wine. They have no large tasting room -- on a summer's day you stand beneath a tarp while they pull winebottles out of a cooler and pour on a makeshift counter. If you're gonna spit or discard some of your wine, you just do it on the dirt. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, and they let you taste their wines for free. Who could ask for more?
This is a surreptitious pinot that creeps up out of the glass with caramel, maple syrup, rasberry, and herbal tea aromas. It delivers mellow fruit flavors of rasberry jam and slightly underripe cherries, with a medium finish. Ultimately, I suspect this wine suffers a little from the tough harvest of 2000. When I tasted it at the vineyard, I liked it enough to buy several bottles, but with a meal, I felt like it didn't have as much personality as I would like. It's a solid wine, and a good value, but not as good as some other Pinots I have reviewed here.
My comments about dynamism aside, I thought this wine went very well with the cinnamon crusted salmon and pan seared duckbreast that we drank it with.
Overall Score: 7/7.5
How much?: $25 at the winery, usually about $29 retail.
You can find this wine at many Internet retailers.
A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. Learn more.
I'll Drink to That: Danilo Nada of Nada Fiorenzo Wine News: What I'm Reading the Week of 8/23 Vinography Images: Night Sorting Small is Beautiful: The Champagnes of Savart I'll Drink to That: Karl duHoffmann of Anchor Brewing Warm Up: Jerez de la Frontera I'll Drink to That: Antonio Flores of González Byass California 2015 - Vintage of Fire Wine News: What I'm Reading the Week of 8/16 A Selection of Georgian Wines
Wine Will Never Smell the Same Again: Luca Turin and the Science of Scent Forlorn Hope: The Remarkable Wines of Matthew Rorick Debating Robert Parker At His Invitation Passopisciaro Winery, Etna, Sicily: Current Releases Should We Care What Winemakers Say? The Sweet Taste of Freedom: Austria's Ruster Ausbruch Wines 2009 Burgundy Vintage According to Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Charles Banks: The New Man Behind Mayacamas Wine from the Caldera: The Incredible Viticulture of Santorini Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Chateau Rayas and the 2012 Vintage of Chateauneuf-du-Pape A Life Indomitable: The Wines of Casal Santa Maria, Portugal Bay Area Bordeaux: Tasting Santa Cruz Mountain Cabernets Forgotten Jewels: Reviving Chile's Old Vine Carignane The First-Timer's Guide to Les Trois Glorieuses of Hospices de Beaune