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Go-to Coteau

[grapes]Domaine Coteau 2006 Pinot Noir (Eola-Amity Hills) – Big and shoulder-y, as usual, but with more grace than in previous vintages…or maybe the fruit is just stronger in relation to the structure, which in the past has seemed to dominate this wine. Deep-toned, with some oven-roasted earth underneath all that broody fruit. (8/08)

Coteau, Japan

[bottle]Domaine Coteau 2005 Pinot Noir (Yamhill County) – Dense and syrah-like, not least because there’s also a healthy infestation of bretty aromas that would seem much more at home in a hefty Northern Rhône. This is incredibly dense and unyielding, and I question whether or not it’s actually pleasurable, much less a worthwhile expression of pinot. Age is unquestionably necessary, and maybe it will be a lot more appealing with proper cellaring, because there’s plenty of structure and extract underneath the funk and weight. Certainly this is what some look for in pinot noir, but it’s not really my style. (7/07)