***I received this wine as a sample.***
For as crazy of a day as I had on Tuesday, Wednesday was fairly calm and quiet work day. With the exception of a few meetings, my schedule was fire drill free, so I was finally able to catch-up on some emails and research. It was one of those days where I didn’t have a big project to show for my hard work, but I still left the office feeling satisfied that I’d accomplished a number of items on my to-do list. The only downside to the day was that I came home to a sick Hubby. Since he wasn’t feeling well, dinner was pretty light and quick, but that just gave me more time to settle into the evening with a nice glass of the 2007 Willamette Valley Vineyards Pinot Noir.
Looking at the several bottles of the Willamette Valley Vineyards’ wine in my wine rack, it was immediately evident that the winery is very concerned about sustainability. On the front label of the 2007 Pinot Noir, there is a big icon that says “Stewardship of the Land,” and on the back label, among other things, is an icon to indicate that the vineyard as Salmon Safe. Therefore, I was not surprised to discover on the vineyard’s website that they offer a 10 cent refund for every bottle that is returned to the tasting room and a $1 refund for every bottle that is returned through the mail. They also recycle all corks and were the first winery in the world to be certified by the Rainforest Alliance for their use of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) standard corks. The winery has a great one-page outlining all of their sustainability efforts, if you want more information.
As for the wine itself, the 2007 Willamette Valley Vineyards Pinot Noir was light, bright ruby with a rim that was turning garnet. On the nose, there were big, juicy red fruit aromas—strawberry, raspberry, cherries—followed by a touch of leather, white pepper, green tea, and vanilla. In the mouth, there were cherries, cherries, and more cherries. The cherry flavors tasted a little candied, and they were followed by a touch of raspberry, powdered cocoa, white pepper, violets, vanilla, and ferns. The wine had low-to-medium tannins with medium acidity.
Is this worth a glass after work? Definitely! If you see this wine in the store, grab it; you won’t be disappointed. At $25, this wine has a nice complexity that is fun for the more experienced wine drinker to puzzle through, while also being easy enough to drink that its flavors aren’t lost on the novice drinker. In addition to all of that, it’s a particularly good choice for the environmentally conscious. One thing to keep in mind when buying a bottle is that while the wine was very good, it tasted a little young. Therefore, you shouldn’t feel rushed to drink this wine right away, as it definitely has some nice aging potential. That said, if you want to drink the Pinot Noir now, it is a wine that is enjoyable both on its own and with food. I ended up pairing the wine with pistachios and the most recent episodes of Castle and So You Think You Can Dance. The saltiness from the pistachios enhanced the earthiness of the wine for a wonderful, rustic taste, while the TV shows enhanced the relaxation factor of drinking a nice glass of wine after a satisfying day of work.