If you're a fan of Pinot Noir, this one's a home run. Hailing from the cool climate of Russian River Valley in Sonoma County, the Davis Bynum Pinot Noir Jane's Vineyard 2011 shows a fantastic nose that's just the epitome of Russian River Valley fruit: sweet ripe cherry and wood spice as well as a forest floor after the rain.
Very classic flavors, too, with dark cherry, red plum, spices and vanilla that comes from toasty French oak barrels. Warm and bright but deep and very giving with its flavors, it's a great amalgam of fruit, spice and garrigue (taste of the earth). Flat-out delicious and one of the most balanced Pinots I've tasted all year.
Davis Bynum Pinot Noir, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley, Jane's Vineyard 2011 ($40).
Previous wine of the week: Curtis Heritage Rosé, Santa Barbara County 2012 ($15).