Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir tops blind tasting

Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir wines

Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir tops the Vintage Wine Tasters blind tasting

At our annual “Splurge” tasting at Rocca’s Restaurant in Burlingame this past Thursday evening, Sonoma Coast Pinot Noirs stole the show, finishing first and second in our blind tasting of eight Pinot Noir wines. Normally our bimonthly meetings are all about tasting bargains in the $20-and-under price range. But at this once-a-year event, we open our pocketbooks and focus our attention on expensive wines. In this case, eight Pinot Noir wines ranging in price from $29 to $50 a bottle.

It was my turn to organize this Pinot Noir tasting. We decided to taste wines across four AVA’s or wine appellations. We conducted two flights of four wines each. Each flight had a wine from the Anderson Valley, the Russian River Valley, the Sonoma Coast and the Willamette Valley. My original plan was to have all the wines from the same vintage. I quickly found out that could not be easily accomplished, so the vintages ended up mixed from 2008 to 2010. One of our requirements for the tastings is that the wines must be available at local wine shops. This way, any Vintage Taster who likes a wine can purchase it within an easy driving distance. See our Wine Shop Map.

Below is the list of wines we tasted and in the order we scored the wines. For ranking the wines, we used the wine scorecard found on Nine members of the Vintage Wine Tasting Club participated in this event.

Pinot Noir Tasting Results

  • 2009 Keller Estate “La Cruz Vineyard” Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir – KL Wines $32.99
  • 2010 Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir – KL Wines $39.99
  • 2009 Merry Edwards Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley – San Francisco Wine Trading Company $44.95
  • 2009 Papapietro Perry Russian River Valley Pinot Noir – The Wine Stop $44.99
  • 2008 Domaine Serene “Evenstad Reserve” Willamette Valley Pinot Noir – Weimax Wines $49.99
  • 2010 Shea Wine Cellars “Block 7” Willamette Valley Pinot Noir – KL Wines $49.99
  • 2010 Drew “Talfryn & Calder” Anderson Valley Pinot Noir – KL Wines $35.99
  • 2010 Copain “Tous Ensemble” Anderson Valley Pinot Noir – KL Wines – $28.99

As you can see from the results, the rankings came out in AVA order. Following the Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir wines, we like the wines from the Russian River Valley, then the Willamette Valley, and followed by the Anderson Valley. We agreed that all the wines were very well made, delicious throughout, layered with complexity, and all worthy of a purchase for a special occasion.

Our next blind tasting will be in February and Vintage Wine Taster Mike will host the tasting of Ribera del Duero wines.


  1. Wow, what a great lineup. Glad to see Sonoma Coast performing well and thanks for sharing you tasting insights on your blog.


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