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Patricia Green Cellars “Dollar Bills Only” Pinot noir


PPatricia Green Cellars Dollar Bills Pinot noir 2011atricia Green Cellars: a down-to-earth winery where the “tasting bar” is a plank over two barrels. That down-to-earth style is reflected in their Pinots, especially today’s steal of a Pinot: Dollar Bills Only, for less than $15!

Patty and Jim’s Pinots are big and juicy, dark and earthy. Of their dozen single vineyard selections,  our current favorite three are offered below: Estate, Balcombe 1B, and Estate Etzel Block.

Dollar Bills Only Pinot noir 2011
$13.45 in any 12 bottle order or Build a Case*  ($14.95)
This will sell out in a heartbeat.
One of the Willamette Valley’s steals that is sold only in Oregon. It’s dark and juicy, filled with red and black fruits. There is an undertone of earth, plenty of spice and a very nice balance. The wine has excellent texture – it’s pretty serious Pinot Noir at a less than serious price.

How the heck did it get that name? Patty and Jim were sitting at Lumpy’s Tavern in Dundee (an infamous Willamette Valley hangout) one night having beer and burgers, talking about their new value-priced Pinot. At a loss for a name, staring at the jukebox across from them, they noticed a sign: “Dollar Bills Only.” “There’s the name!” they yelled, and Dollar Bills Only Pinot noir was born. The label photo shows the famous jukebox. Dollar Bills Only is Patricia Green Cellars’ “great buy” wine – a steal – great fruit flavors, dark color, super “house wine” for your house! Only sold in the Willamette Valley.

at right, Patty Green

Patricia Green, Patricia Green CellarsPatricia Green Cellars Estate Pinot noir 2011
$26.95 in any 12 bottle order or Build a Case* ($29.95)
Dense, dark purple color and a seductive scent of roses and spice. The darkness continues: intense blackberry, black cherry, smoke, and cassis. The finish adds the Patty terroir – dusty, fresh turned earth, forest floor, and slate in a lengthy interplay of flavors. – Jean

The heart and true strength of the 2011 Estate is Pommard clone, which generally makes up around 60-70% of the wine. The density, darkness and tannic structure comes largely from the Dijon 114 vines that were planted in 2001. The polishing characteristics and beautiful aromatics are lent from the Wadensvil clone that was planted in 1997. This bottling is designed to show off the inherent power that younger vines display in the Ribbon Ridge Appellation. – The winery

Patricia Green Cellars Balcombe Vineyard Block 1B 2011
$49.45 in any 12 bottle order or Build a Case* ($54.95)
135 cases made.
Their most popular wine, it is an intense, exotic, muscular Pinot noir. A heady aroma of rose petal incense prepares you for big black raspberry and cherry liquor, finishing powerfully while picking up notes of black currant and black cherry. A very structured wine, made for aging, or decant and wait several hours before drinking. Patty’s longest-lived wine, an excellent choice for your cellar.- Jean

An old standard and a spot-on bottling of what is certainly our most popular bottling over the years. The 2011 vintage marks the 15th consecutive year we have worked with and farmed this vineyard. It is long term relationships like this, especially with older vineyard sites, that make for Pinot Noirs that serious Pinot Noir drinkers come to expect. The 2011 is taut with crunchy, deep red fruit and shows a fairly demonstrative display of structure. This is a powerful, muscular wine. – the winery

Patricia Green Cellars Etzel Block Pinot noir 2011
$53.95 in any 12 bottle order or Build a Case* ($59.95)
115 cases made.
From a block of vines just a fence away from Beaux Freres’ estate vineyard, owned by Mike Etzel, thus the name “Etzel Block.” Polished and powerful with ripe raspberry and white flower scents. As the wine opens in the glass, the kind of fruit keeps changing to black berries, raspberry, cherry, or currant. The fruit flavor is tinged with dusty herbs and earth. It was delicious with several hours decanting, but this wine’s muscular tannin structure will show best with cellaring. – Jean

Nuanced to a fault. Has a seamless nature to it while incorporating a wide range of fruits and spices. Stronger finishing tannins than normal give it a gutsy gloss to the texture.

Planted on a north/northwest slope in 1986 this is the second oldest block in the vineyard. It is called the Etzel block since it faces our neighbor’s (Mike Etzel) property and you can see him steaming around in his vineyard (Beaux Freres) quite clearly from most of this section. It still never ceases to amaze us how this vineyard produces such an array of flavors, textures and frameworks from the different sections. This particular block is so utterly different than anything else in the vineyard, including the younger vines planted between the older rows of the block that it still blows us away even though we are more used to it than anyone else.

As good as we think the wine is from this block on a yearly basis what we have in barrel exceeds those annual expectations. This is so superbly pure, deep, perfumed and complex that it almost seems unique and unusual. This usually is a wine that has a masculine twist to a fairly feminine style of wine. Roles are reversed this year. This has trappings of grace and charm that will no doubt set in more distinctly over time but at present this is far and away the most full-throttle bottling of this block we have ever seen. There is an electricity and energy to this wine that is truly profound. The crop was fairly low on this block this year and we have a lower number of barrels to select from than in any of the past 3 vintages. – the winery
Shop ALL Patricia Green Cellars Wines
Read: Fabulous Wines from Former Tree Planter: Patty Green

Jean Yates

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