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8 Ratings
Freeman Vineyard Pinot Noir Keefer Ranch Russian River Valley

Wine Details

Varietal

Pinot Noir

Style

Red

Wine Description

Freeman's only vineyard-designated Pinot Noir comes from Marcy Keefer's ranch located in the Russian River Valley, on Green Valley School Road. The Russian River Valley is a broad appellation in Sonoma County with quite a few areas of different microclimates. It is warm enough in the northern part for grapes like Zinfandel and Cabernet, but in the southern and western parts, the Russian River Valley is much cooler, and is perfectly suited for Pinot Noir. Keefer Ranch sits in the center read more...Freeman's only vineyard-designated Pinot Noir comes from Marcy Keefer's ranch located in the Russian River Valley, on Green Valley School Road. The Russian River Valley is a broad appellation in Sonoma County with quite a few areas of different microclimates. It is warm enough in the northern part for grapes like Zinfandel and Cabernet, but in the southern and western parts, the Russian River Valley is much cooler, and is perfectly suited for Pinot Noir. Keefer Ranch sits in the center the Green Valley, which has always been considered one of California's ideal spots for Pinot Noir. Marcy, her son Craig, and their small crew hand-farm the Keefer Ranch year round with no outside help at all. The vintage of 2007 was a winemaker’s dream in many respects. The summer weather was warm but not too hot, which predicted ripe but not overripe fruit. The fruit set, cluster weights and berry sizes were all on the lower side, so this told us we could expect excellent concentration. September cooled down beautifully, and ripening slowed to a crawl: just what we like. However, in early September at Keefer Ranch, we were seeing ripeness ahead of most of our other vineyards. Typically Keefer is one of the later sites where we pick. It comes in during the second half of September, most years. The small crop at Keefer in 2007 evolved quickly, and we ended up bringing in the Clones 23 and 777 right after Labor Day. This beautiful, fruit-forward wine offers a subtle stylistic shift from the three previous vintages of Keefer Ranch Pinot Noir. On the nose, appealing aromas of black cherry and rhubarb dominate, as opposed to Keefer’s more signature floral elements. On the palate, it is noticeably softer in acidity than earlier Keefer bottlings. For those who prefer to pop and pour, rather than decant for several hours, this is a great chance to enjoy a Keefer Pinot in all its youthful glory. This said, we do anticipate the wine improving with a few years of bottle aging, so try a bottle now, and lay a few down for later. (hide)

Expert Reviews
Read all 3 expert reviews
  • Robert Parker
    (2012 Vintage) Rating: 91/100 - As reviewed by Robert Parker on 12/21/2014
  • International Wine Cellar
    (2005 Vintage) Medium red. Smoky, floral-accented raspberry and redcurrant aromas, plus a bright mineral hint. Fresh and focused, with bright red berry flavors, fine-grained tannins and a refreshing suggestion of orange peel on the finish. Nicely balanced, elegant pinot, with impressive purity and finishing persistence.
  • International Wine Cellar
    (2009 Vintage) Vivid red. Captivating perfume of raspberry, spicecake, rose and minerals. Very ripe but juicy and bracing, with sweet red berry preserve, mineral and floral pastille flavors supported by a firm spine of minerality. Finishes with excellent focus and spicy, floral persistence.