Weâ€™ve been feasting on great wines, of late. Thankfully, weâ€™re fortunate enough to do so, because there are some fine reds out there waiting for a celebration. Last night, at Saltus River Grill in historic downtown Beaufort, we uncorked another splendid Pinot from Oregonâ€™s Willamette Valley.
According to Oregon Pinot Noir Club, the Terrapin Cellars Pinot Noir 2004 is a major score.
WOW â€“ pinot noir that tastes good for just $16! Iâ€™ve been tasting a lot of â€œvalue-pricedâ€ pinots from Oregon lately â€“ most of them are simply disgusting, and undrinkable. Thus I was quite pleased to find this gem. Itâ€™s made by a guy named Rob Clark, who manages nine vineyards around Salem, and got into winemaking as a very minor sideline. From the â€™04 vintage he made almost 1,000 cases of pinot gris, and only 150 cases of this pinot noir. I just want to make a good table wine that sells for a reasonable price,â€ he told me. He succeeded with this wine, which has plentiful dark-flavored fruit, a bit of plumpness in the middle, and a fruit-based finish that is extended for long seconds thanks to that fresh â€™04 acidity. Itâ€™s a bona-fide bargain.
This bold wine is earthy and spicy. The timid need not apply.