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To all Wine Exchangers,
The Cristom boys are at it again.

Three guys, together since 1992, honing their skills and crafting some of the finest Pinot Noir in North America. Three guys that have learned together, grown together and watched their vineyards and winemaking mature into something exceptional. Truly exceptional.

In this case, we could call this an Oregon Pinot Noir dynasty. A team that started off great and keeps getting better and better.

The Players? Vineyard owner Tom Gerrie, vineyard manager Mark Feltz and winemaker Steve Doerner.

Everything old is new again. Since the beginning these guys have not been afraid to use the wines of Burgundy as their model, native yeast ferments with whole clusters has been their standard operating procedure for two decades. Both of these concepts are now de rigueur for many of America’s most ‘progressive’ Pinot Noir producers.

We’ve hurled every superlative at this gang over the last 20 years and, every year, they continue to prove us right, vintage after vintage, producing some of the most compelling Pinot Noir in the new and old world.

The line-up this time around:

Cristom Pinot Noir Mt. Jefferson Cuvee Willamette Valley 2017 – In 2017 this wine is 60% Estate fruit from Eileen, Jessie, Louise and Marjorie Vineyards – the balance sourced from, ahem, neighbors that have included, in the past (and present?):  Amalie Robert, Arcus, Canary Hill, Carter, Feltz, Guadalupe, and more. What a line-up of sites!

This is certainly, for our money, one of the best Pinot Noirs under $30 in America. It’s a gorgeous, slinky, silky, Burgundy-inspired wine that completely over-delivers. Did you see those vineyards? Nearly all of them produce single vineyard wine that retail for $50+. It always hits the ‘90’s, including this one.

93 points James Suckling“An attractive array of rich red to dark cherries that delivers a fine layer of perfume and a wealth of bright raspberries and red cherries. The palate is subtly earthy and gently spicy with a very plush and assertive core of blueberries and red cherries. Smooth, supple and very energetic. Drink over the next six to eight years.”

And, of course, their legendary single vineyard offerings, this year from the outstanding 2016 vintage! These wines as a group are some of the most compelling Pinot Noirs on the planet (no hyperbole) as the reviews clearly indicate! I cannot honestly recall ever presenting such a universally lauded group of Pinot Noirs in our 30+ year history…
Cristom Jessie Vineyard 2016 - Situated on a spectacularly steep site, the Jessie Vineyard boasts the best views on the property. Named for Paul Gerrie’s paternal grandmother, Jessie is the most diverse of Cristom’s vineyards, and a challenge to farm. As her vines mature (planting began in 1994), Jessie continues to distinguish herself among the other vineyards with a uniqueness and complexity that likely stems from the site’s ranging slope and five distinct soil types.
 
95+ Points Wine Advocate!  Medium ruby colored, the 2016 Pinot Noir Jessie Vineyard is a touch reticent on the nose, opening to broody scents of black cherries and licorice with notes of herbs, bergamot and grated baking spice with earthy touches of soil and wet leaves. Medium to full-bodied and wonderfully silky in the mouth, it's packed with layers of ripe fruit, spice and earth. It gives fine, firm tannins and mouthwatering acidity, finishing very long and very layered. This is wonderfully complex with loads of layers—give it some time in bottle to show its best.
 
94 Points Josh Raynolds, Vinous Media!  Deep bright-hued red. Intense red berry, cherry pit, blood orange and exotic spice aromas show excellent clarity and pick up a suave floral quality with aeration. Stains the palate with vibrant raspberry, bitter cherry, allspice and rose pastille flavor that show a compelling blend of power and delicacy. Fine-grained tannins build slowly on the impressively long, lively finish, which emphatically repeats the floral and spice notes.
Cristom Louise Vineyard 2016 - Paul’s maternal grandmother is the namesake for the Louise Vineyard, the first of the Cristom estate vineyards to be planted. Top slopes that run up against woodland separate Louise’s lower vineyards from the upper, causing them to spend late afternoon in shade. The fruit on the lower slopes, which gets more sun, is often the first of the season to be harvested.
96 Points James Suckling!  This delivers an ethereal and fragrant impression on the nose with a bright, red-fruit theme that is framed in sweet spices and flowers. The palate has a strong array of ripe red cherries with sappy complexity and crisply defined tannins. Impressive tension here. Needs time. Try from 2021.
94 Points Josh Raynolds!  Brilliant red. A complex bouquet displays scents of fresh dark berries, cola, baking spices and woodsmoke, along with a sexy floral nuance. Shapely and energetic on the palate, offering concentrated black raspberry, cherry-cola, violet pastille flavors and a trace of succulent herbs. Finishes sweet, chewy and very long, with slow-mounting tannins and insistent floral and spice notes.
Cristom Eileen Vineyard 2016 - The 15-acre Eileen Vineyard is a group of vineyard plots named for Paul Gerrie’s wife. The vineyard extends to the top of the winery’s property where cooler conditions and the chance to soak up the last sun of the day encourage the grapes to ripen slowly and evenly. Sweetly spiced, with forward-focused fruit and gentle tannins that coat the mouth, Eileen offers immediate drinking pleasure, with an even and voluptuous quality that gives her wide appeal.
 
95 Points Josh Raynolds!  Shimmering ruby-red. Expansive dark berry, potpourri and baking spice aromas show excellent clarity and pick up smoky mineral and musky earth nuances with air. Combines power and finesse with a deft hand, offering palate-staining black raspberry, boysenberry and spicecake flavors that deepen steadily on the back half. Shows sharp delineation and a suave violet pastille quality on the strikingly persistent finish, which features fine-grained tannins and a sappy, resonating dark berry liqueur note.
 
95 Points James Suckling!  Very alluring, spice-laced, ripe red and black cherries, making a complex statement on the nose. The succulent and focused palate has a very considered feel with impressive balance and a long and focused, cherry core that delivers detailed textural allure. Drink or hold.  
Cristom Pinot Noir Mt. Jefferson Cuvee Willamette Valley 2017
93 Points! An attractive array of rich red to dark cherries that delivers a fine layer of perfume and a wealth of bright raspberries and red cherries. The palate is subtly earthy and gently spicy with a very plush and assertive core of blueberries and red cherries. Smooth, supple and very energetic. Drink over the next six to eight years. - JamesSuckling.com
ONLY $29.98
Cristom Pinot Noir Louise Vineyard Eola-Amity Hills 2016
96 Points! This delivers an ethereal and fragrant impression on the nose with a bright, red-fruit theme that is framed in sweet spices and flowers. The palate has a strong array of ripe red cherries with sappy complexity and crisply defined tannins. Impressive tension here. Needs time. Try from 2021. - JamesSuckling.com
ONLY $54.98
Cristom Pinot Noir Eileen Vineyard Eola-Amity Hills 2016
95 Points! Shimmering ruby-red. Expansive dark berry, potpourri and baking spice aromas show excellent clarity and pick up smoky mineral and musky earth nuances with air. Combines power and finesse with a deft hand, offering palate-staining black raspberry, boysenberry and spicecake flavors that deepen steadily on the back half. Shows sharp delineation and a suave violet pastille quality on the strikingly persistent finish, which features fine-grained tannins and a sappy, resonating dark berry liqueur note. - Josh Raynolds, Vinous Media
ONLY $54.98
Cristom Pinot Noir Jessie Vineyard Eola-Amity Hills 2016
95+ Points! Medium ruby colored, the 2016 Pinot Noir Jessie Vineyard is a touch reticent on the nose, opening to broody scents of black cherries and licorice with notes of herbs, bergamot and grated baking spice with earthy touches of soil and wet leaves. Medium to full-bodied and wonderfully silky in the mouth, it's packed with layers of ripe fruit, spice and earth. It gives fine, firm tannins and mouthwatering acidity, finishing very long and very layered. This is wonderfully complex with loads of layers—give it some time in bottle to show its best. - Erin Brooks, robertparker.com
ONLY $54.98
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