TN's: Loring Library Pinots

Posted by: James Cross

TN's: Loring Library Pinots - 05-26-2020 10:20:32

These are from Brian's sale a couple years ago. Finally got around to trying them with modest hopes. They are both from the Brousseau vineyard. It is up by Chalone and the family had some connection to "old" Chalone. It was always one of my favorite sites for Loring pinots. Someone else now gets the fruit, maybe Sarah's and/or Testarossa??

2008 Loring "Brousseau" (Chalone)(SLH) 15.2%. Decent maroon color, slight browning, rusty, one color ring, good clarity, somewhat musty and reticent nose. Blackberry fruit profile, clean finish with some acid, and a little sludge. Overall, a bit tired, but not OTH. I'd call it "fully mature."

Next up was the 2006 which I figured would be shot. Not.

2006....same info but only 14.7% alcohol. Nice color, way more vibrant than the 2008. Ruby color with good clarity, one color ring, good legs/viscosity. Nose is black cherries, smooth mid palate with a clean finish, although just a little bitter. This is a drink/hold and in no danger.

Go figure on these. One notable difference is the alcohol. Brian went through a "phase" where he pushed the alcohol to the edge of the envelope, then he backed off. The current wines are much more moderate.

This was an interesting exercise. Brian always said to drink the wines early, but not so much these days. I also have some library chards to try, and that should be interesting as well.
Posted by: Charlie Chadwick

Re: TN's: Loring Library Pinots - 05-26-2020 10:49:39

Nice notes, James. Thanks for the updates!

Posted by: Sean_Devaney

Re: TN's: Loring Library Pinots - 05-26-2020 12:07:03

Nice notes as always James. I do miss the Naylor Dry Hole bottling. One nit to pick is Chalone is it's own AVA and is to the East of the SLH AVA across the Salinas Valley in the Gabilan Mountains.
Posted by: James Cross

Re: TN's: Loring Library Pinots - 05-28-2020 08:09:21

The one I miss is the Rancho Ontiveros. I believe Mr. Ontiveros now makes his own wine (is that Native 9?) with Paul Wilkins (ex of Alban) as the winemaker. There was a RO in the library sale but I think it was 1999 or 2000. That one was too risky for me.
Posted by: BEB

Re: TN's: Loring Library Pinots - 06-01-2020 06:15:21

Thanks for the post, James. Always a pleasure to read your impressions of Brian's wines. I love the Brosseau bottling, but like you most miss the RO. It has always been my favorite.