2018 Pinot Noir, Freestone Vineyards
Price $60.00, $48.00 (Phelps Preferred)
Blend and Grape Sources 91% estate-grown Pinot Noir (47% Quarter Moon Vineyard and 44% Pastorale Vineyard) and 9% grower fruit.
Appellation Sonoma Coast
Aging/Cooperage 13 months in 39% new and 61% two-year-old French oak barrels.
Winemaking Data Harvest takes place at night followed by sorting before the fruit is gravity fed to tank for a long natural fermentation using an overall average of 16% whole clusters in the final blend. Regular punch downs result in a structured wine with silky texture and a distinctive Freestone spice character of boysenberry, forest floor and clove prevalent in this area of the western Sonoma Coast.
Winemaker Notes The 2018 Pinot Noir highlights fragrant violet, rustic baking spices and cedar notes followed by juicy raspberry, black cherry and hints of red currant. Focused and youthful with a lifting acid length, black pepper spice and orange peel essence.
The 2018 Sonoma Coast growing season was marked by cool, mild weather. The cooler than normal spring delayed budbreak, bloom and veraison by two weeks compared to the previous five years. The mild weather patterns in August and September allowed for excellent overall phenological ripening and development of a complex aroma and flavor
profile in the finished wines.
96 Points - Wine Enthusiast
This impressive wine is juicy, textured, layered and lengthy. With a cool-climate crispness at its foundation, it unfurls lovely flavors of dark plum, wild strawberry and orange peel, finishing in a touch of nutmeg. -VB, Sept. 2020
94 Points - Robert Parker Wine Advocate
Pale ruby-purple, the 2018 Pinot Noir Freestone Vineyards has alluring aromas of dried lavender and bergamot, aniseed, blood orange and amaro-like accents with a core of perfectly ripe red and black berry fruits. The palate is light-bodied, silky, soft and juicy but packed with nuanced flavor layers, and it finishes incredibly long. What an elegant, layered expression this vintage! -EB, Sept. 2020
93 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
The 2018 Pinot Noir Freestone Vineyards saw just a touch of stems (16%) and 13 months in 39% new French oak. Lots of mulled red and black fruits, flowery incense, a kiss of cola, and earth all emerge from this medium-bodied, rounded, brilliantly put together Pinot Noir. As seamless and gulpable as they come, it has light tannins, outstanding length, and is going to evolve for 7-8 years or more.
92 Points - Antonio Galloni Vinous
The 2018 Pinot Noir (Sonoma Coast) shows just how appealing the vintage is, even at the appellation level. Freshly cut roses, violet, crushed red berry and mint are all beautifully lifted in a weightless, gracious Pinot that is all finesse. There is a sense of translucence that is so alluring. The 2018 is pure and total class. (2020)
91 Points - Connoisseurs’ Guide to California Wine
Vitality, brightness and very keen fruity precision rather than heady ripeness have for long been the hallmarks of Phelps’s Freestone Pinots, and, if those virtues are once again on display in this outing, the 2018 edition ups the ante a touch in terms of juicy, optimally ripened fruit. It displays an extra bit of richness and range that, combined with its typically firm and lively balance, guarantee many years of positive growth ahead. Enjoy it while still young for its vigor and verve, but know that appreciably more complexity awaits. (June 2020)