Block Nine pinot noir review: digital representation of pinot

22 02 2011

Today we look at a 2009 pinot from California that I bought for $13.

Block Nine vineyards is dedicated to making only pinot noir, which is really cool.  Right now they offer only the “Caiden’s Vineyards” pinot.  The famous Robert Parker has called the 2009: “Everything a pinot noir should be,” and said, “even more shocking is how good Block Nine pinot noirs are for their price.”  His notes on the 2008 included: “Earthy, gamy, plum and cola aromas jump from the glass of this medium plum/garnet-colored wine. Complex notes of herbs, sweet cherries and sassafras follow through on the palate.”

All of which is baffling and mildly hilarious, because, unfortunately, this California red with the pretty dark-pink color tastes like alcohol-infused cherry water, not pinot noir.  It’s very pleasant, light-to-medium bodied, and easy to drink.  It’s also too sweet, typical of California pinots.  To be fair, it does have a bit of spice and floral action going on, which is nice.  Overall it’s like a computer-generated replica of pinot noir, by the guy who made the ’80s Atari video games.  The big problem for Block Nine is Mark West, which is still under $9 at many stores, and really does taste like pinot noir. 

Cool bottle, awesome “one grape only” philosophy for a winery, but Block Nine is:

Not recommended.

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