Saturday, March 7, 2015

Rascal Redux - Rascal Oregon Pinot Noir Non-Vintage

I've written up this incredible little bargain in the past and thought it might be a good time to taste the current release. Pinot Noir is still selling briskly in general and at Nomad Pizza in Philly, where I consult. Our customers love Pinot Noir, even if it isn't the best match for Tom and Stalin's incredible Calabrian pizza. Well, everyone gets to drink what they like I guess.

I've always liked Oregon Pinot in general. It's a cooler wine climate than Napa, Sonoma or points south, and thus it produces more delicate, balanced versions for the most part. This is a gross generalization of course, but you get the idea. I don't like the sweeter, more extracted versions that are so prevalent in the marketplace. Pinot Noir should be translucent in color with alcohol levels in the moderate range. Once you start getting to 14% and beyond, Pinot ceases being Pinot for me.

This incredible $9.99 bargain has all the good Pinot Noir aromas and flavors you expect - the bright raspberry and cherry, the brown spice notes and some floral nuance as well. This is the most balanced, most pleasing everyday Pinot Noir I've ever had. It's from the Great Oregon Wine Company by way of Stone Wolf Vineyards - who might just have the least informative wine website I've ever seen. An email to the winery seeking some additional info on this wine went unanswered. Oh well, the juice in the Rascal bottle definitely makes up for that. Cheers.

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