Les Belles Collines 2012 Russian River Pinot Gris
Medium nose. Melon, lemon, and flower, with a bit honey note. The palate contains a bit white pepper flavor and light flint mineral. Medium+ acidity. As the temperature rising, more candy nose.
Neither a Alsace style nor a cheap American pinot gris style.
SY rating: 16.5/20
Les Belles Collines 2012 Russian River Chardonnay
The winemaker, David, said this is kinda “winemaker’s wine”. He put the fermented wine in medium roasted oak barrel for 6 months (20% new), and try to adjust it delicately. This resulted in a style between California oak style and Bourgogne style.
Medium+ nose. Oak barrel, hazelnut, toffee candy, creamy, roasted nuts, sidewalk after summer thunder shower, peach, flower, and light honey.
The palate has oak, toffee, vanilla note, caramel, light matured nose of starfurit, and grapefruit. High acidity.
More rounded than Bourgogne blanc, but still sharper and lower tone than California Chardonnay.
SY rating: 18/20
Les Belles Collines 2012 Russian River Pinot Noir
The winemaker, David, think this is a “wine grower’s wine”, i.e. not too many manual adjustments involve. 50% new oak for 6 months.
Very fruity style. M+ nose. Raspberry, strawberry, camomile flower, and fresh cut grass note. Bitterness spice flavor at the end of palate. Medium tannin. Although quite a cutie girl style, this is much better than many California pinot noir. (BTW, don’t put Pinot Noir wines from Bourgogne, Oregon, California and New Zealand together and argue their qualities. Different terriors contribute styles.)
SY rating: 17/20
Les Belles Collines 2010 white label
2010 is not a good vintage, due to its more rainy and cooler weather. This resulted in this lower alcohol blending — 12.9%, and more Cabernet Sauvignon green note. Quite similar to 07 Medoc wine in flavor style.
Medium+ nose. Cinnamon, clove, leather, dust, black currant, black berry, wooden spices, and eucalyptus leaves. High tannin, medium acidity, and a bit stem note on the palate.
SY rating: 17/20
Les Belles Collines 2010 grey label “Les Sommets”
Black currant, more fruity than the white label. Leather, wet soil, leather. A bit eucalyptus leaves. High tannin, medium+ acidity. Very lingering.
BTW, in the blind tasting session, this 10′ grey label ranked 2nd among 4 items. Better than 09′ white label and Dominus 05′, and only a bit behind Caymus special selection 09′.
SY rating: 18.5/20