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Arterberry Maresh Dundee Hills Pinot noir 2013

Arterberry Maresh

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Jim Maresh's loss is your gain. He declassified ALL but 7 barrels of Maresh Vineyard, for its own bottling. Everything else he liked went into Dundee Hills. Free-run juice from coveted old vine sites: Maresh, Juliard, Weber, and Winderlea, alongside Gehrts and Foley Hill.

At first I thought, "this is better than the 2012." And then I retasted it and said, "this is better than the 2012!" Yet another fantastic bargain from Jim Maresh. - Marcus

2012 vintage notes: an incredible bargain. A beautiful fan of aromas - red fruit, cinnamon, dried flowers, minerals, white pepper and a pinch of brown sugar that reappears towards the finish. Cherry, red currant and fleshy strawberry make for a juicy, slightly spicy array of flavors that engage you with Pinot noir magic. Incredible vineyard sources including Maresh, Juliard, Winderlea, Weber, and Gehrts that spent 22 months in barrel and developed a super silkiness. I saw it put on weight after only a few hours open - I expect it will do the same in a cool cellar over the next 2-4 years. - Marcus

Previous vintage tasting notes: Fragrant red fruit and earth burst from the glass of the 2011 Arterberry Maresh Dundee Hills Pinot noir. Fresh raspberry and pie cherry flavors are accented by a zesty citrus/cranberry note. The finish is refreshing and pure, with hints of brown spices helping the red fruit coast along. This delightfully low alcohol Pinot does exactly what winemaker Jim Maresh describes: it slides down your gullet.

Arterberry Maresh Dundee Hills 2011 is Pinot of remarkable pedigree, including all 6 vineyards Jim works with: Maresh, Juliard, Weber, Ana, Winderlea, and Gehrts. In this "high rent" district, this is a rare "rent controlled" loft! - Marcus

Below, Jim Arterberry Maresh in the winery

Jim Arterberry Maresh

2009 Vintage

Recommended by the SF Chronicle 10-22-2011

Amazing value. Let me explain: you take some 1970-planted Maresh Vineyard Pommard and add in more Maresh Pinot, plus fruit from the esteemed Juliard and Winderlea Vineyards and put it in a bottle for under $25. Yep, Jim declassified some of his best fruit because it was a little "bigger" than he likes for the Maresh. Lucky us, since that makes his Dundee Hills packed with flavor, slightly spicy red fruit brimming out of the glass. At 13.8%, I wouldn't exactly call this "big," but I would call it smoking good. - Marcus

San Francisco Chronicle: "Jim Maresh shows off the best of both his family's Maresh vineyard and the Dundee Hills' red soils. This basic bottle is rewarding, with a stellar polish to its texture. A delicacy is at work for fruit that shows off a subtler side of the vintage. Slightly spicy, revealing a soy and tangerine edge to rich cherry flavors." - Jon Bonne

Christina Kelly

Avalon friend Christina Kelly on Arterberry Maresh Dundee Hills Pinot noir 09

I eyeballed the label on the 2009 Arterberry Maresh pinot noir, saw a simple white label, 13 percent alcohol and a note on the back label stating the vines were non-irrigated. My immediate thought was this was going to be a light, simple pinot noir that would gently mingle with, and compliment, a grilled piece of salmon.

When I discovered there was no salmon in the refrigerator, I selected a small pork tenderloin roast that I sliced into medallions, coated with Italian seasonings and olive oil and gently sautéed with black truffle oil to bring out a little earthiness in the pinot, if it had any.

The moment I opened the wine, I knew I had underestimated what was contained inside. It smelled sexy; it poured like silk and it coated my glass with a thickness than showed more heft than a thin pinot would give up. And the color was dark ruby, also unexpected.

"Raspberries," said my husband when he stuck his nose in the glass. "I smell raspberries and strawberries.

Upon tasting, we both noted juicy cherries, a wisp of smoke and spice on the long finish. By the time we paired it with the pork and truffle oil, and mushroom risotto, the earthiness revealed itself in the pinot and we were cleaning up our plates. Both my husband and I caught ourselves looking over at the bottle to see how much was left.

That glass of pinot had balance—nothing out of place, with a sweetness (not sugar-sweet) that you find in good pinot noir. Our meal stretched longer because we wanted to savor the wine with the food.

It wasn't big and over-extracted and it wasn't thin and insignificant. As cliché as it sounds....It was just right--seamless, lovely and yielding up a mouthful of chiseled, but delicate red fruits. If this wine was ever described as feminine, I would agree that it has the delicacy of a piano players hands, along with the strength to play Rachmaninoff.

I would also call it an honest-to-goodness date-with-homemade-dinner wine. And, under $25, it feels like you've splurged and leaves you wanting more.

- Christina Kelly

2008 Vintage

Arterberry Maresh Pinot noir Dundee Hills 08 - Forward, juicy and earthy, the 08 Dundee Hills delivers a ton of mixed berry, black currant and flash of tart cherry. The straight forward fruit is accented by briar-patch and wood-spice. Unlike your average value Oregon Pinot, Jim's Dundee Hills gets "the treatment" that his single-vineyard wines do: a full 16 months in barrel to allow for a seamless wine. This is going to fly. - Marcus

Given the incredible quality of the 2008 vintage, Jim declassified a lot less to make a mere 131 cases of Dundee Hills. The majority of fruit came from the Holstein Vineyard, with significant chunks of Maresh and Juiliard.

below, Maresh Vineyard, Erath Vineyard in background

Maresh Vineyard view

2007 Tasting Notes

Arterberry Maresh Pinot noir Dundee Hills 07 - Fantastic value in classic Oregon Pinot noir. Fresh cherries and pie cherry expand to raspberry and brighter blueberry, with shavings of fresh cinnamon stick. Like the 07 Maresh Vineyard, there's a sweet edge that has nothing to do with sugar, and everything to do with the essence of Pinot noir. Very silky, with a ribbon of dried thyme and Dundee Hills minerality. Beautiful, higher-toned fruit grows in complexity with air, and we recommend decanting or cellaring for 1-2 years.

The Dundee Hills 07 is made primarily from Maresh Vineyard, with the youngest planted in 1992, and the oldest in 1970. Jim's one barrel of White Rose Vineyard went into the 2007 Dundee Hills.

2006 Vintage Tasting Notes

An ethereal and elegant example of 2006 Pinot noir. Jim's style emphasizes texture, and the Dundee Hills 06 shows its seamless, supple body at first sip. Picked a bit earlier than most 2006 Pinots, it retained a beautiful thread of acidity that's woven around juicy dark plums and berries, with subtle notes of clay and anise on the finish. The wine is made from declassified, old vine fruit from a very well-known Dundee Hills vineyard (eh hem) and reflects it's origin. A freakin' great value.

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