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HALCON Pinot Noir  "Bearwallow Vineyard"   Anderson Valley, Mendocino 2016

Retail Price: $42

Value Rating: 4.3

Wine Factor: 2
Date Posted: January 2, 2019
Cases Produced: 150

Scores & Value Ratings Explained

DDWA Score: 90

Great Value


It’s tricky to make a delicious, truly delicious, Pinot Noir from an “extreme” vineyard like Bearwallow. Paul Gordon of Halcon knows how and achieved it in his first release of Pinot Noir from “Bearwallow.”

By extreme I mean very cool micro-climate at the northwest end of Mendocino’s Anderson Valley where vines and valley turn to coastal woodlands. Add on the fact that it’s a rocky, north-facing hillside vineyard (most cool sites will face south to gobble up late-day summertime sun) and you have a challenging environment for full ripening to say the least.

Mr. Gordon is comfortable with high risk vineyards, as his own “Halcon Vineyard” in the boonies of Yorkville Highlands attests. So I’m not surprised that the Halcon “Bearwallow” Pinot 2016 is delicious. But I’m particularly impressed. Sporting 12.7% alcohol, a red cherry hue and an athletic body type, this compares favorably to Burgundy. If you’re afraid of this being thin, tart and meager, let your fear go because it’s none of those. It is wild red cherry, ruby red grapefruit, fennel, black tea and more with a pleasant tang and lingering savory goodness. Delicious drinking in early 2019. Best drinking 2021-???.

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Halcon Vineyards