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Oregon & Washington Wine Specialists Since 1988

Toluca Lane Pinot noir 06
Avalon's Wine Pick of the Week for 4-2-08

"Smooth move, ace"

Toluca Lane Pinot noir 06

Growing up, my siblings and I often used the flippant term "smooth move, ace" when one of us would do something particulary dorky or just plain stupid (for example my brother burning off his eyebrows, my sister driving her car into the concrete median, and my own overzealous volcano cake experiments). In hindsight, that's how I feel about missing out on the 2005 Toluca Lane Pinot noir. I tasted it exactly a year ago, loved it, and in the chaos of our day to day world missed out on the opportunity to work with it. Yesterday, we opened the 2006 Toluca Lane Pinot noir ($29.95, on sale 15% off $25.50 through April 13) and it was (dare I say it?) even better.

Lush and densely packed with big blackberry and black cherry notes. Silky and mouthcoating, the flavors just keep coming and bombard the mouth with intense juicy black plum and little bursts of bramble. Layered throughout is a background note of earth and creamy bits of caramel. But this wine just doesn't stop. The mouthfeel is so rich and coating, you find yourself going back to retaste, almost second guessing that it can really be that good (especially at the price).

Toluca Lane is the once dream and now reality of vineyard manager and winemaker Geoffrey Toluca and his partner Lane. This is their fourth commercial vintage from their winery nestled in the Eola-Amity hills.

There is no need to cellar this wine, it is drinking well now. In fact, as I was writing this note, one of our clients walked into the store, tasted the wine and exclaimed "I could drink that wine all day long. Wow." When I told her the price, her jaw dropped and she promptly ordered half a case. (Thanks Margot!)

All that to say, it's good. Really good.

Happy drinking and good eating,




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