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Evesham Wood Pinot Noir Cuvee J 2013

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I re-tasted this two weeks ago and it blew me away; I haven't been able to stop thinking about it. If you like big Pinots, this isn't the wine for you. If you like multidimensional, seductive, ethereal, age-worthy Pinot noir, you can do no better. The nexus between bright and dark, of cool and sweet. Beautiful right now, best when tucked away for 3-10 years. This is a "sleeper" wine in a sleeper vintage - the kind of wine where you'll kick yourself a few years from now for not buying more.

When I'm asked to suggest a literal handful of Oregon Pinots to buy every vintage, Evesham Wood's Cuvee J is one of them. I've said it for three years and I'll say it again: Cuvee J is among an elite list of Oregon Pinots. It deserves cult status. We are lucky that we don't have to fight for this wine...yet. Only 150 cases made - the most exquisite, age-worthy six barrels of the vintage from Evesham's organically farmed Le Puits Sec vineyard.

Last note: while I'd never refer to a $45 wine as inexpensive, Cuvee J is underpriced compared to its peers. Try finding another Oregon winery with 28 vintages and 30 year-old vines (organic too!), where their super-limited, top Pinot noir is under $50.

2011 vintage notes: I just tried this again (Monday, 4/14) and it's stunning, beginning to emerge and express the potential of its regal, elegant self. Fans of classic Pinot noir take note - this is not to be missed. I said it last year and I'll say it again: Cuvee J belongs among an elite list of Oregon Pinots - it deserves cult status. - Marcus

2010 vintage tasting notes: Jaw-droppingly awesome. I can't put in print what I texted Erin upon first taste. This truly is an amplified version of Le Puits Sec, but it goes even further. Expressive, expansive, rounded, multi-dimensional. Crushed cherries, violets, woodspice and white pepper segue into a spectrum of red and black fruits with a beautifully developed texture. The finish coats your palate while staying vibrant and energetic, lingering with delectable fruit and subtle dried herbs. I highly recommend it - big-time! - Marcus

Evesham Wood

Winemaker Erin Nuccio compares this to his Le Puits Sec Pinot calling it "the amplified version. It's up a notch and more structured. It's ageable but shows great now." While the percentage of new oak was the highest of all the 2010 pinots, he told us "the wood integrated nicely and is noticeable on the nose, but in a good way."

2009 Vintage Tasting Notes

Evesham Wood vineyard view, fog and cows

For years, Cuvee "J" has been one of those truly cult wines - a must-have for Oregon Pinot noir collectors. It is released and sells out in a few days. Part of the foundation of my cellar, I've been collecting it since 1996. Cuvee "J" usually needs cellaring - it's subtle, refined, mysterious, ever changing, and unforgettable.

Cuvée J continues to be a 6 barrel selection exclusively from Le Puits Sec Vineyard. Somewhat in contrast to many 2009's the Cuvée J is quite tight and restrained at first, opening up on day 2 with plum and violet notes dominating. It was barrelled in 40% new French oak, contributing a spicy character. Time in bottle is needed for the wine to fully develop. - Erin

2008 Vintage Tasting Notes

Evesham Wood Pinot Noir "Cuvee J" 08 - Evesham's most anticipated, smallest production Pinot.

Darker and burlier than Le Puits Sec, the vineyard's amazingly elegant creaminess shines through in the 08 Cuvee J. Packed with dark berry and black cherry fruit, the J adds crushed lavender, purple flowers and Asian spices to the deep mix. It was stunning with our dinner of pan-seared Cattail Creek Farms lamb chops, delicata squash, and a grape tomato-sherry salsa. - Marcus

2007 Vintage

Evesham Wood Pinot Noir "Cuvee J" 07 - Russ Raney's top Pinot noir each year, this wine is created with two main sources of inspiration and advice: two of Burgundy's top small producers: the legendary Henri Jayer (Vosne-Romanee), and Michel Niellon (Chassagne-Montrachet). Released November, 2009.

Russ makes very little of this wine, his best, and its subtle complexity and evocative scent and flavors improve for 8-12 years with cellaring. Call to order.

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