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Senior editor James Laube, Wine Spectator's expert on the wines of California, joined the magazine in 1983.
James Laube

A Vibrant Sonoma Pinot at Its Peak

Williams Selyem Sonoma Coast Precious Mountain Pinot Noir 2003

James Laube
Posted: August 5, 2009

As I continue to thin my cellar, I’m finding some delightful wines that I’m glad I found now rather than later. Truth be told, a few of the wines I’ve uncorked were past their prime: good wines, but better years ago.

The 2003 Williams Selyem Precious Mountain Pinot Noir, however, is delicious now and has the core vibrancy, acidity and sleek, firm mix of blackberry and raspberry fruit that’s often found in the cooler Sonoma Coast appellation. The wine is also very dense and tight, offering a minerally edge on the finish. The acids and tannins do exactly what they’re supposed to do—clean off the palate, leaving a lingering berry-anise-pebbly flavor. I gave it 91 points, non-blind.

WineSpectator.com members: Read the original blind tasting review for more recently rated California Pinot Noirs, plus our quick list of Top Values among California Pinots.

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