Russian River Valley
$45 (Wine Club Reorder: $36)
“Freeman’s 2018 Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley) is absolutely gorgeous. Racy and exuberant in the glass, the 2018 exudes richness and all of the allure of the year. Bright acids lend brightness to a core of black cherry, plum, spice, lavender, sage and floral notes. Soft curves give this open-knit, pliant Pinot tons of sheer appeal. Far from an easygoing appellation level Pinot, the 2018 packs plenty of punch, with a lot of tannin and bright acids. Give it a few years to soften. Vineyard sources are Gloria and Keefer. This is a fabulous appellation-level wine.” 93 points – Antonio Galloni
Ken and Akiko Freeman started their winery quietly in 2001 and since then have developed a style of Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir that appeals to those who savor elegant cool-climate wines with lovely ripe fruit flavors.
From the first vintage, the Freeman style went against convention. While others pushed the limits of ripeness, Akiko and consulting winemaker Ed Kurtzman sought balance and refinement. Today, the winery is defined by those same pursuits, with Akiko at the helm as winemaker, and Freeman is recognized internationally as one of California’s most acclaimed small producers.
Freeman wines are deeply tied to the idea of provenance, which is the place of origin. The wines are crafted using grapes from some of the coolest parts of the Russian River Valley and the extreme Sonoma Coast. As much as these origins are tied to a distinctive sense of place, they are also tied to an abiding belief that California can produce Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines that are as complex, eloquent and age-worthy as those of Burgundy.
The Russian River Pinot Noir is a subtle wine, with an easy drinking style that’s sure to be a crowd pleaser. With a medium dark ruby color and pleasant aromas of ripe plums and earth, the wine is soft and rich on the palate. It has just the right amount of balanced acidity, along with flavors of spicy Pinot berries and watermelon. The wine’s finish is long, with prominent acidity.
Amy Ryan – November 2021