Williams Selyem Winery began when Ed Selyem and Burt Williams started making wine as a hobby in 1979 in Forestville, California. Their first commercial release was in 1981, and in less than two decades they created a cult-status winery of international acclaim. Setting a new standard for Pinot Noir winemaking, they put Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley at the forefront of the best Pinot Noir regions in the world.
Today, John and Kathe Dyson, who purchased the winery from Burt and Ed in 1998, work with winemaker Jeff Mangahas to carry on the passion for Pinot Noir without compromise. Other varieties bottled at Williams Selyem include Chardonnay, Zinfandel and Chenin Blanc.
100% of this wine is comprised of fruit from the Vista Verde Vineyard, located a couple miles south-east of Hollister, California, near the small town of Tres Pinos in San Benito County.
Ruby red in color. 13.5% ABV. Pretty nose of dark red fruits, earth and damp forest floor. Medium body with ample acidity. Tremendous structure and mouthfeel. Black cherry, blood orange, cloves and baking spices on the palate. Exceptional length on the finish. Just a really nice appellation wine that bodes well for the single vineyard Pinots from this vintage. Hard to go wrong here at just under $40. Best over the next several years.
My rating: 91 points.
Williams Selyem can periodically be found at retail, but the mailing list is highly recommended. The 2018 Central Coast will be offered by the winery next Spring.
I wrote about Williams Selyem previously in Reflections on Two Days in Russian River Valley and The 2018 Zinfandel Chronicles Power Rankings.