"Made in a seductive style, the 2013 Pinot Noir Grand Reserve comes from their estate vineyards in Monterey and Santa Barbara (about two-thirds from the former and one-third from the latter). This is the largest cuvée of these Pinot Noirs, with 8,750 cases. It shows soft berry, strawberry and cherry fruit, loamy soil undertones and sweet tannin in a medium-bodied, sexy style. Drink it over th next 4-5 years.
In some extremist circles it is fashionable to criticize anything that’s big and successful (Kendall-Jackson is both of those). This winery, in addition to the massive quantities of some of their less expensive wines, which deliver terrific bargains to wine consumers, also produces limited quantities of high-end wines that can take their place against the toughest of competition. All this is attributable to the late visionary Jess Jackson and today is carried on by his widow, Barbara Banke. They’ve never been shy about spending money for top mountain vineyards throughout California, and have always hired talented winemakers. In this case, Kendall-Jackson’s entire hierarchy of wines has been guided impeccably by their longtime employee, Randy Ullom. He doesn’t get much notice from wine geeks, but what he does is remarkable. And when you consider the diversity of wines of which he oversees production, the diverse array of microclimates, terroirs, etc., he probably has as much experience making large and tiny quantities of high-quality wines as any winemaker in the world. This is a look at some of the new and upcoming releases, and again, these are impressive wines, including their new Avant series, which is basically a lineup of wines moving away from the influence of oak, and emphasizing the fresh fruit of the varietal from which they are produced." (WA)
Lively berry pie notes are defined in wild
strawberry and black cherry, with hints of
vanilla. Earthy aromas finesse this bright wine
with forest floor and dried leaf tones, leading to
a velvety finish and a longing for another sip!
—Randy Ullom, Winemaster