Moshin Vineyards2004 Pinot Noir, 115 Clone
(Russian River Valley)
He was called “Professor” on the campus of San Jose State University, and that exalted title was well-earned: a mathematics instructor with world-class credentials. However, Rick Moshin was also – at the very same time – a wide-eyed wine novice when he joined Davis Bynum Winery where Gary Farrell was making some of Sonoma County’s finest Pinot Noirs. Moshin worked in the role of cellar rat under Farrell, picking up all the tricks of the trade – such as early harvesting, fretting over too much color and too little acid.
It was the mid-1980s, well before Farrell would gain fame as perhaps the master of the discipline, and Moshin was simply piling up the details on how to craft a delicate, structured Pinot Noir.
In 1989, he was so thrilled with the notion of making his own wines that he acquired a 10-acre parcel of land not far from Bynum off Westside Road, and planted Pinot Noir. Soon after he acquired a site near Farrell’s on which to build a winery.
This exciting wine is one of three very similar Pinots made by Moshin, with a delicate spice note that adds interest to red cherry/strawberry fruit and delicate hints of jam and clove. Superb structure, so I expect it will age nicely for a decade.
Reviewed October 6, 2006 by Dan Berger.
Dan Berger has been reviewing wine for 30 years, always seeking character related to varietal type and regional identity. He has never used numbers to rank wine and doesn’t plan to start any time soon. He believes that weight and concentration aren’t the only worthy aspects of wine and is especially smitten by cool-climate and food-friendly wines that offer distinctiveness.