One of the most collectible Pinot Noirs made in all of Oregon is from a winery you’ve probably never heard of: Thomas Winery. Located in Carlton, Oregon, winemaker John Thomas has been releasing small amounts of wine from the Thomas Vineyard since 1988. I don’t recall ever seeing ratings from the Wine Advocate or the Wine Spectator, and I don’t think Thomas has ever hosted a public event. It truly is an undiscovered gem.
The 2008 Thomas Pioir Dundee Hills was the winning bottle in the October Installment of Pick My Next Bottle. The wine was not decanted but I did get the chance to taste over the course of an evening.
Crimson in color. 13.7% ABV. Classic nose of red fruits, earth, stones and minerals. Perfectly balanced with medium body and nice acidity. Cranberries, black cherries and spice on the palate. The finish is exceptional and highlights the earthy minerality of this young Pinot Noir. My advice would be to drink over the next 3-5 years but it sure would be interesting to try this wine in 2028 or so.
My rating: 94 points.
Thomas Pinot Noir makes a brief appearance at Portland-area shops soon after release, and is priced right around $45 per bottle. I’ve had the opportunity to taste bottlings going back to the late 90’s, and think the wine shows best 7-10 years past the vintage date. You may still be able to secure a few bottles of the recently released 2013.
I’ve blogged about Thomas previously in Thomas Winery: The Best Pinot Noir You Have Never Heard Of.
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1 thought on “2008 Thomas Pinot Noir Dundee Hills – Bottle Notes”
Nice review of the 2008 J. Thomas Pinot Noir Dundee Hills, Tom! On November 4, 2015 I opened the same bottle. Thanks for allowing me to leave my tasting notes of this wine on your blog. It’s always fun to compare and contrast tasting notes with others when the same wine is tasted about the same point in time. Here are my notes:
The 2008 J. Thomas Dundee Hills Pinot Noir has an attractive deep ruby color. Aromas of crushed raspberries, cherries, flowers, and a subtle hint of acetone jump out of the glass immediately after the wine is poured. The first flavor that hits the palate is sassafras (think old-fashioned root beer; e.g., A&W). Then, black raspberries, black cherries, cranberries, forest floor, anise, and spice (cinnamon?) follow. On the finish, a voluptuous tobacco, herb, and mineral characteristic emerge with aeration. This medium-bodied wine has a sweet, as opposed to earthy, attack, mid-palate, and finish. Although not super-concentrated, the 2008 J. Thomas is well-balanced, exhibits a fair amount of energy, and delivers boatloads of complexity and pleasure. 94 points now. This morning the wine tasted much richer, rounder, and softer than the previous evening. Thus, I’m thinking this wine is likely to improve over the next 3-5 years. Delicious wine!