Calera Wine Co.

Owner(s) Josh Jensen
Web site www.calerawine.com
 
Link to this site
Calera Wine Co.

In the late 1800s, laborers working in the Gavilan Range built a stone kiln on Mt. Harlan, using it to bake limestone dug out of the slopes and hauled down the mountain in horse-drawn carts. Around 1910, the kiln was abandoned when the internal combustion engine made remote wood-fired kilns obsolete. The kiln now sits in the center of the Calera Estate and is depicted on the label.

With its 2005 vintage wines, Calera Wine Company is celebrating its 30th vintage. In 1974, when Josh Jensen (affectionately called "Generalissimo" and "Mr. Pinot") first planted his vines on a remote property in the Gavilan Mountains, he was among a select few pioneers at the time who were attempting to farm Pinot Noir in California. In 1974, only 500 Pinot Noir vines were planted and hand-watered, but in the following year, the first vineyard blocks were established. It was the presence of limestone that brought Jensen to this remote location. Josh Jensen’s remarkable story was first told in detail in 1993 in the first edition of the book, The Heartbreak Grape, A Journey in Search of the Perfect Pinot Noir, by Marq de Villiers. A completely revised and updated version was published in 2006 (McArthur & Company, paperback, $10.99). Jensen’s saga is an inspiration for anyone hoping to follow a passion for Pinot Noir and only now, after thirty-two years, has his heartbreaking efforts found vindication. Pinot Noirs from Calera can hold their own to the best from Burgundy.

In 1975, Jensen cleared enough land to plant the initial three Pinot Noir vineyards, located approximately a 50 minute drive from the winery site. The vineyards were Jensen (named after his father, Stephen), Selleck (named after Dr. George Selleck who first introduced him to wine), and Reed (named after his initial business partner). Mills (named after John Everett Mills who built the infrastructure on the property on Cienaga Road for a mining operation - these retaining walls were to become part of Calera’s gravity-flow winery), and the Chardonnay and Viognier plantings followed in 1984. The Jensen Vineyard is nearly 14 acres, Reed is 4.4 acres, Selleck is 4.8 acres, and Mills is 14.4 acres. The most recent Pinot Noir planting is the Ryan Vineyard (named for Jim Ryan, the vineyard manager since Calera began) which is 13.1 acres and was planted in 1998 and 2001.

The original four vineyards were planted with a special selection that Jensen does not name sourced from the nearby Chalone Vineyard. This homogeneity, along with consistent vineyard management (Jim Ryan has been in charge of the now-organic vineyards since 1979), and winemaking, make the Calera block-designated Pinot Noirs an interesting example of terroir expression. The Calera wines typically have a distinct mineral backbone and age easily a decade or two.

By 2006, Jensen had 83.6 acres planted on his property which consisted of 648 acres (the first two parcels purchased in 1974 and 1977) and 440 adjacent acres. The winery, the world’s first and only completely gravity-flow winery, was built on seven different levels into a hillside. The first vintage of estate Pinot Noir was in 1978, all of 700 cases in half-bottles, and was the initial Calera wine made at the winery. Calera is the only winery in the Mt. Harlan AVA (he can also use the Central Coast AVA and San Benito AVA designations as well). Curiously though, the vineyards are in the Mr. Harlan AVA, but the winery technically is not, so he cannot use “estate bottled” on the label.

Calera's vineyards are located at 2,200 to 2,500 feet above sea level and are cooler than almost all vineyard locations in the North Coast (Josh can prove it with University California Berkeley's 30-year temperature averages for all California towns and cities).

The Calera Pinot Noirs are probably the closest to the Burgundian idiom of all Pinot Noirs in California. The wines are shy and reticent upon release, with the best drinking window between 5 and 20 years after the vintage. Jensen abhors what he calls “Smasher-Blasters,” California Pinot Noir fruit bombs that “are mostly one-dimensional, simple but potent beverages that will merely lose their fruit, their main if not their only appeal, with the passing years and just turn into … . expensive mud.” His vision for the perfect Pinot Noir is well reflected in the eloquent style of his wines and is one “that is perfectly balanced on the cusp of richness and complexity, of fruitiness and subtlety, and is neither one nor the other.”

In 2007, Mike Waller joined Calera as winemaker. He is a graduate of University of California at Davis and has held an assistant winemaking position at Chalone Vineyard. Fermentations are native, significant whole clusters are used, and about 30 percent new oak on all wines.

Calera wines are sold on the website and through retail distribution. Current annual production is 31,000+ cases. The portfolio includes seven different bottlings of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Aligoté, and Viognier (Jensen petitioned the U.S.D.A. to import Viognier cuttings in 1973 when it did not exist in this country). 32% of production is estate grown.

Reviewed Wines

NV Calera Mt. Harlan Chardonnay

2200 feet elevation. Native yeast fermentation, aged 10 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · This wine is less about fruit and more about acidity and salinity. Flavors of lemon, white peach and roasted nuts. Impressive balance. Very good. Reviewed April 13, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Calera 35th Anniversary Central Coast Vin Gris of Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., $16. 60% San Ysidro Vineyard (Santa Clara County) and 40% Doctor’s Vineyard (Monterey County). · Deep strawberry color in the glass. Scent of red berries and red plums. Drinks more like a lighter-weighted Pinot Noir than a Rosé with fairly hearty flavors of red berries, cherries and subtle herbal oak, finishing with on a dry, crisp note. Source: website and retail. Decent. Reviewed July 1, 2011 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Ryan Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.1% alc.. 2500 feet elevation. Aged 18 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · Lovely aromas of fresh cherries, rose petals and spice. Earthy, with flavors of black cherries and dark berries. The muscular, chalky tannins stand out. Good Reviewed April 13, 2013 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.1% alc.. Aged 17 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · A more serious wine of tremendous interest. Aromas of cherries, blueberries, sandalwood, spice and sandstone. Delicious middleweight flavors of dark cherries and berries. Very smooth on the palate with less bitter tannins than the Ryan and more depth and length on the finish. Exceptional. Reviewed April 13, 2013 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 200 cases. · Moderately dark reddish-color in the glass. Aromas of ripe berries, red roses, sassafras and a slight green note. Luscious essence of fresh black raspberries with an incredibly intense and long finish. A little herbal in character with firm, dry tannins. Very good. Reviewed July 21, 2013 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Central Coast Pinot Noir

14.3% alc., $24, glass closure. Sourced from seven vineyards in San Luis Obispo, San Benito, Santa Clara and Monterey counties (33% Latetitia Vineyard). Native yeast fermentation, aged 11 months in 10% new French oak barrels. · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of cherry glaze, dark red berry jam and black olives. A gentle, lighterstyled wine with bright cherry fruit on the modest mid palate attack, finishing with notes of cherry skins, oak, herbs and sandalwood. Well-mannered tannins for easy drinking, but enough structure to match up with hearty fall foods. Good (+). Reviewed November 29, 2011 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Mt. Harlan Chardonnay

13.9% alc., 1,035 cases, $28. From organically grown grapes. Yields were 1.65 tons per acre. Aged 10 months in 30% new French oak barrels. 100% MLF. · Light straw in color. Aromas of citrus fruits, apple and peach. Very tasty and complex flavors of spiced pears, limes, lemons, brioche and oak. The toasty oak in the background adds rather than detracts. Very clean, crisp and understated with a slightly creamy texture. Beautifully balanced for longevity. Incredible value. Very good. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Mt. Harlan Viognier

13.9% alc., 468 cases, $30. From a 6.1-acre vineyard that is organically farmed. Yields of 1.25 tons per acre. Aged 10 months in French oak barrels. 100% MLF. · Light straw color in the glass. Lovely perfume of tropical fruits including papaya with notes of lemon curd and honeysuckle. Moderately rich with plenty of glycerin intensity and minerality. Tasty composite of pineapple, roasted apple, poppyseed and white peach leading to a clean, richly fruited finish. Very impressive and the best example of this varietal currently being produced in California. Very good. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera de Villiers Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., 1,460 cases, $35. 15.6-acre vineyard, yields 2.06 tons per acre. Made from organic grapes. Native fermentations, aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels. Unfiltered. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Aromas of ripe plum, blackberry and raisin with hints of damp earth and oak. Moderately rich array of very ripe purple and black fruits with a hint of Hoison sauce and Asian spice, backed by modest tannins. The most approachable wine in the 2009 lineup. Good. Reviewed December 8, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Ryan Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 2,318 cases, $40. 13.7-acre vineyard, yields 2.33 tons per acre, aged 18 months in 30% new French oak barrels. Unfiltered. · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. Shy aromas and flavors of dark cherries and raspberries. The appealing fruit is buried in overwhelming tannins. Good. Reviewed December 8, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 1,599 cases, $45. 16.3-acre vineyard, yields 1.55 tons per acre. Aged 18 months in 30% new French oak barrels. Unfiltered. · Light reddish-purple color in the glass. Muted aromas of dark red cherries and berries and oak spice. Generous fruit intensity starring black cherries, finishing with good fruit presence. Very muscular tannins currently overwhelm the fruit. Good. Reviewed December 8, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Reed Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.8% alc., 281 cases, $52. 4.4-acre vineyard, yields 1.02 tons per acre. Aged 17 months in 30% new French oak barrels. Unfiltered. · Light reddish color in the glass. Enticing aromas of strawberries, red cherries and sandalwood. More vineyard terroir evident that the other vineyard-designated Pinots in this vintage. Flavorful core of cherries, brown spice and a hint of vanilla wrapped in balanced tannins. Not the fruit intensity of the other Pinots in this vintage, but the long aromatic finish leaves an enticing trail of cherries. A feminine wine in a dominatrix way. Very good. Reviewed December 8, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 1,277 cases, $73. 13.5-acre vineyard, yields 1.34 tons per acre. Aged 17 months in 30% new French oak barrels. Unfiltered. · Moderately light reddish-purple hue in the glass. Restrained aromas of darker berries and subtle oak. Very pretty core of discretely concentrated black cherry fruit buried in flamboyant tannins. A captivatingly long finish exceeds that of any other Calera Pinot in this vintage. The future looks very bright but this wine will demand patience. Very good. Reviewed December 8, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 Calera Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 420 cases, $78. 4.8-acre vineyard, yields 1.21 tons per acre. Aged 17 months in 30% new French oak barrels. Unfiltered. · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. Nicely scented with aromas of blueberries, blackberries and clay. Fat in the mouth with generous flavors of black cherries, blueberries and boysenberries backed by muscular, firm tannins. The wine has an extra depth of flavor at the end just when you think it is finished. Very good. Reviewed December 8, 2012 ARTICLE »

2008 Calera Central Coast Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., $24, glass closure. Grapes sourced from Monterey County, San Luis Obispo County, Santa Clara County and San Benito County (50% from Scheid and Laetitia vineyards). 50% whole cluster, native yeast fermentation, aged in 10% new French oak barrels for 11 months without racking. · Moderate dark red color in the glass. Aromas of black cherries, brier, oak and pipe smoke. A brooding wine with little uplifting qualities, offering flavors of sweet black cherries, black raspberries and plums, finishing with a tarry, herbal, earthy presence. More dirt and oak than fruit and pretty ordinary. Decent. Reviewed November 29, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 Calera de Villiers Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., 1,460 cases, $35. Yield 2.06 tons per acre. Native fermentation, aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels, bottled unfiltered. · Moderately deep reddish-purple color in the glass. Riper fruit profile on the nose offering scents of black currants, black cherries and Asian 5- spice. Moderately intense on the palate with flat out delicious flavors of black cherries and dark plums with an appealing minerality and earthiness underlain with a hint of citrus. Very smooth in the mouth with fine-grain tannins showing up on the richly endowed finish. Even more strikingly aromatic the next day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle, tasting of darker Pinot fruits. An ideal pretense to seduction. Reviewed November 29, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 Calera Ryan Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 972 cases, $40. Yield 0.8 tons per acre. Native fermentation, aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels, bottled unfiltered. · Moderate reddishpurple color in the glass. Plenty to wow over with the ever-changing nose offering aromas of black cherries, boysenberries, baking spice, graham, dried fruits and subtle oak. Crisp and lively on the palate with earthkissed black cherries and raspberries, showing plenty of chewy tannins but enough bright acidity to offset and bring the wine into balance. Needs time to shed its structurally imposing fruit tannins. A touch of heat peaks out as the wine warms in the glass. Very good. Reviewed November 29, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 510 cases, $45. Yield 0.47 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels and bottled unfiltered. · Moderate reddish-purple hue in the glass. Plenty of interest in the nose with scents of dark red berries, sandalwood, seasoned oak, and pastry. Vibrant and amazingly intense on the mid palate attack with flavors of dark red berries and dark red cherries wrapped in gentle, fine-grain tannins. The fruit refuses to give up its presence on the spectacular peacock finish. A touch of heat shows up on the nose and finish, but this seems trivial considering the impressive palate presence of this wine. Outstanding the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Reviewed November 29, 2011 ARTICLE »

2008 Calera Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.7% alc., 829 cases, $70. Yield 0.86 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak and bottled unfiltered. · Moderately light in color with mainly reddish tones. Subdued but seductive aromas of dark red cherries and berries, charcoal and spice. Lighter in weight than the other Calera single-vineyard offerings in this vintage and unusually light for Jensen. Flavors of ripe strawberries, red cherries and red raspberries with an appealing spice box accent, enrobed in well-proportioned dusty tannins which peek out on the dry and persistently aromatic finish. Very creamy and soft in texture. Calera’s signature Pinot Noir, deserving of all the accolades one can muster for this vintage. Reviewed November 29, 2011 ARTICLE »

2007 Calera de Villiers Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 631 cases, $35. 30% of the fruit from this relatively young (for Calera) vineyard was de-classified. Yields were a ridiculous .78 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 20% new French oak barrels. · The pleasing aromas trump the flavors. Welcoming scents of plums, berries, brioche and cut flowers. Tart cherry and berry flavors with a short, hot finish. The flamboyant tannins and lively acidity obscure the substantial fruit at this point. Cellar this one for sure. Decent. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Calera Ryan Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.8% alc., 1,847 cases, $40. Yields were 2.45 tons per acre. Aged 17 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · Attractive perfume of red plums, berries, cedar and Herbs de Provence. Moderately light in style featuring redder fruits, earth, meat and stem accents, smoothly textured, with plenty of tannin on the hot finish. Decent. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 943 cases, $45. Yields .84 tons per acre. · The nose is complex and alluring, offering scents of black cherries, caramel, oak vanillin and cut flowers. Restrained and demure dark red fruits have a hint of stem and mushroom, with admirable persistence on the finish. The texture is striking for its sexy silkiness. A little heat lingers in the after taste. Very good. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Calera Reed Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 190 cases, $50. Very low yields of 0.9 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · Lightest in color of the Calera Pinot Noirs in 2007. Terrific nose that really draws you to the wine featuring aromas of red raspberries, strawberries, cranberries, rose hips, tea and balsam. The most delicate and feminine, least tannic, and most approachable Pinot Noir in the lineup offering discreetly concentrated red berry fruit, sandalwood, baking spice and herbal flavors. Very good. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Calera Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., 1,113 cases, $70. 13.5% of the crop was declassified. Yields of 1.46 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · The most vibrant and captivating nose in the lineup revealing an array of high-pitched wild berries, ripe strawberries, and black cherries with a subtle conifer and stem note. Luscious core of fruit echoing the aromas with impeccable balance and a smooth, silky texture. Impressive persistence of fruit flavors on the high-tone finish. A legend in the making. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2007 Calera Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.8% alc., 411 cases, $75. Yields were 1.36 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · Lovely full-on perfume of black cherries, red plums, spice box and roses. Juicy and succulent berry fruit flavors nicely spiced and framed with well-honed tannins and bright acidity. Tastes like the best berry compote you have ever had. A little heat peaks out on the finish, but this is otherwise a very charming wine that is hard to say no to. Reviewed November 24, 2010 ARTICLE »

2006 Calera Mt Harlan Cuvee Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 3,239 cases, $30. Vino-Seal. Primarily Mills with some Jensen and Reed vineyard grapes from younger vines. Aged in 30% new French oak for 14 months. · Cranberries, oak and a touch of alcohol on the nose. Medium-weighted red berry flavors with a hint of oak. A bit short on the mid palate and the very dry finish. Reviewed November 17, 2008 ARTICLE »

2006 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 1,795 cases, $38. Yields were 3.16 tons per acre. 44% of fruit was declassified. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Alluring aromas of black cherries, earth, spice, smoke and subtle oak. A cherry bombast with teeth-coating tannins that are dry and astringent. Very smooth and silky in the mouth. Much better the next day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Patience will be rewarded. Very good. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2006 Calera Ryan Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 2,155 cases, $40. Crop yield 3.29 tons per acre (average crop yield for this vineyard over last 10 years is 1.53 tons per acre). Average Brix 25.1º at harvest. Native fermentation. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Potent and seductive aromas of black cherries, black raspberries, spice, white pepper and red hots. Luscious black cherry core which is a bit earthy and kissed by minerals. Plenty of good tannin for the long haul. Rich and mouth filling, persistent, with lively acidity. Perfect in every way. I’m buying a case. Reviewed May 7, 2009 ARTICLE »

2006 Calera Reed Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.4% alc., 929 cases, $42. Yields were 3.0 tons per acre. Aged 14 months in 30% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Lightest in color of the 2006 Pinot Noirs. Very charming perfume of redder fruits including strawberries and red currents with a hint of baking spice. Reddest fruit flavors of the 2006 Calera Pinot Noirs and the most elegant and approachable wine of the lineup. Very nuanced with notes of raspberries, pomegranate, forest floor, and minerals with a little steeliness to the finish. Plenty of upfront charm and still drinking beautifully the next day from an opened and re-corked bottle, indicating the potential for longevity. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2006 Calera Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.3% alc., 2,531 cases, $49. Yields were 3.06 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Brooding stone fruits with a hint of oak char on the nose. More fruity and more appealing nose the next day from an opened and re-corked bottle. Velvety stone fruit core which is a touch earthy but primarily one-dimensional now. Still closed and unyielding, showing more leg, softness and character the next day from a previously opened re-corked bottle. A wine with plenty of charisma that will benefit from a few years in the cellar. Very good. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2006 Calera Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.2% alc., 793 cases, $63. Yields 2.43 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak. Unfiltered. · On the nose there is intense loamy fruit accented by anise and grilled meat scents. Lovely depth and richness of lightly spiced cherry and raspberry fruit on the palate. Rich and full-bodied, yet very smooth with restrained tannins and a finish Hollywood would be proud of. Great scent, great purity and great persistence. Even better the next day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. A great cellar candidate although it is hard to say no to now. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera Wine Company Ryan Vineyard Mt Harlan Pinot Noir

Still a Lolita with a massive structure and healthy tannins, cellar this one for several years and you will be smiling from ear to ear. Reviewed March 23, 2008 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera 30th Anniversary Vintage Mt. Harlan Aligoté

12.8% alc., 54 cases, $28. Aligoté (Al-eego- tay) is the other white grape of Burgundy. Reportedly, its ancestral home is Bouzeron in Burgundy’s Côte Chalonnaise. The grape is noted for producing an austere acidic wine and those in Bouzeron were known to add a few drops of Créme de Cassis to the wine to make it palatable. This was the origination of the cocktail Kir. Actually, if yields are kept low and the wine is vinified appropriately, it can produce a white wine of crisp character. It is most adaptable to limestone-rich soils. Jensen grafted over two rows of Pinot Noir to Aligoté in the Jensen Vineyard as an experiment. This is the first commercial harvest and one of the few wineries to release this varietal in the United States. · I rather enjoyed this wine. The flavors were similar in profile to Riesling with apple, mineral and a little petrol evident. Tropical fruits and butter scents were quite attractive. The acid was well-corralled. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera Mt Harlan Viognier

15.0% alc., 679 cases, $28. · Typical for the varietal with tropical fruits dominating. Perfectly fine with Chinese chicken lettuce wraps. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera Mills Vineyard 30th Anniversary Vintage Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 1,351 cases, $37. Yields 1.3 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 18% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Needs air time or decanting to open up. Scents of dark berry jam, briar, oak and grilled meat. Robust jolt of earthy dark fruit attacks the palate, filling the mouth with flavor and finishing with a hint of grapefruit peel. Well-endowed with fine-grained tannins. Very good. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera 30th Anniversary Vintage Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 1,351 cases, $40. Average 10 year crop yield from this vineyard is 1.3 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 18% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Fabulous intoxicating perfume of strawberry and raspberry jam. I could only shake my head after sticking my nose into this one. Unbelievable! The concentrated flavors echo the aromas. Plenty of vibrant Pinot fruit finds every cranny in the mouth and is pulled into line perfectly by adeptly proportioned t n‘ a. Hey bro, you won’t find a wine like this from Dijon clones. Reviewed May 7, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera Ryan Vineyard 30th Anniversary Vintage Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 1,410 cases, $40. Yields 1.61 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 18% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Bold aromas of ripe black cherries and berries with a hint of sweet oak. The most Caliesque of the 2005 Pinot Noirs with flashy and luscious thick fruit tasting of black raspberries, plums, tar and earth. Full and rich on the palate with wellendowed tannins and a vein of fresh acidity. A hearty Pinot that needs hearty food. Still drinking fine the next day from a previously opened re-corked bottle. Very good. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera 30th Anniversary Vintage Reed Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 436 cases, $45. Average 10 year yield 1.48 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 18% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Intense perfume of dark red plums and cherries with a thin oak cloak. Relatively light compared to the other Calera vineyard-designates and more approachable. Moderately demure red fruits touched by baking spice, cola and oak. Very supply tannins and bright acidic spine. A lovely debutante. Reviewed May 7, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera 30th Anniversary Vintage Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 1,264 cases, $60. Average 10 year yield from this vineyard is 1.51 tons per acre. This vintage 1.4 tons per acre. Average Brix at harvest 24.2º. Aged 16 months in 18% new French oak. Unfiltered. · A haunting aromatic profile that is highly nuanced featuring plum, blueberry, black cherry, oak and forest floor. Not as thick or chewy as the Ryan at this stage, showing more silkiness and brightness. Moderate tannins and a refreshing riff of citrus on the dry finish portend a long life ahead. A connoisseur’s Pinot. Reviewed May 7, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera 30th Anniversary Vintage Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

15.0% alc., 287 cases, $63. Average 10 year crop yield 1.35 tons per acre. Yield in 2005 was 1.19 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 18% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Stick your nose in this one and you won’t leave the bright cherry, fresh herb and brioche aromas. Healthy spiced cherry core that is rich and full without being jammy. Very soft and smoothly textured with moderate fine-grain tannins and an endless finish. The alcohol is perfectly integrated. Can you make a California Pinot Noir that is balanced at 15% alcohol? Check this wine out for your answer. This wine was still strutting its stuff the next day from a previously opened re-corked bottle. A showoff. Reviewed May 7, 2009 ARTICLE »

2005 Calera Selleck Vineyard 30th Anniversary Vintage Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

15.0% alc., 287 cases, $63. Yields 1.19 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 18% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Brooding aromas of dark ripe fruits, raisin and seasoned oak. Ripe, but not overripe spiced cherry and berry core with an earthy bent. The alcohol is well-integrated, the acidity is bright and the mild dusty tannins make for easy drinking. Gets better and better in the glass over time. Very good. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2004 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

15.0% alc., 1,209 cases, $40. Yields were 1.28 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 15% new French oak. Unfiltered. · A wine that displays very overripe fruit aromas and flavors. On the nose, there are scents of cooked and spiced plums, prunes, raisins, porto, and old wood. The generous core of very ripe fruit is wrapped in flamboyant tannins. May soften more in time, but will always be a tannic wine. Decent Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2003 Calera Mt. Harlan Chardonnay

14.0% alc., $25. · A clean nose featuring butter and minerals. Butter, caramel and a little toast are enhanced with brisk acidity and a tangy finish. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2003 Calera Reed Vineyard Mt Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 296 cases, $42. · A very complex Pinot Noir with strawberry, raspberry, cherry, vanilla and spicy oak aromas and flavors. Soft and light as a feather. A feminine wine which is quite showy in its youth and the most drinkable of the 2003s. Still soft and delicious the next day from an opened bottle. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2003 Calera Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 729 cases, $43. · Gorgeous perfume of cherries, roses, exotic woods, root beer, spice and toast. Shy cherry, tea and cassis flavors are surrounded by a meatiness and earthiness of great charm. Silky in texture, there is brisk acidity and finegrained tannins on the lingering backend. Still lovely the next day from an opened bottle. A shy charmer that is very seductive. Merci! Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2003 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 835 cases, $43. · The nose is clamped shut but with urging reveals dry cherry, earth, mushrooms, and wet grass highlights. Riper fruit tones dominate the palate, with plum, prune and currant evident. The wine has plenty of structure and healthy tannins on the full finish. Not particularly charming now, but should make a lovely wine over time. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2003 Calera Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 207 cases, $52. · Hi-tone cherry, cranberry, black raspberry nose. Rich and deep red fruits enhanced by oak create a pleasant fullness on the palate. Very lovely wine with great persistence and a lengthy finish. A ton of Pinot charisma. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2002 Calera Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., pH 3.67, 799 cases. Yields 0.97 tons per acre. Aged 18 months in 30% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Aromas and flavors of wild berry jam, smoke and oak. Very tasty berry fruit kissed by the earth with a tangy citrus lift on the finish. Still has plenty of dry tannins that should soften more in time. Very good. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

2002 Calera Ryan Vineyard 1st Harvest Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 115 cases, $40. Yields were .3 tons per acre. · Aromas of dark fruits, toast and a touch of alcohol. A full mouth of lush dark fruits with plenty of unresolved tannins on the finish. A huge Pinot that drinks like a Cabernet Franc. Needs a steak. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2002 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 1,468 cases, $43. · A bright cherry nose with spice, particularly cardamom. Heady cherry liquor dominates the palate. Seamless like the dress Maria Sharapova wore at the US Open. Terrific in every way. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2002 Calera Reed Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 454 cases, $48. · A dusty cherry nose leads to ripe black cherry, mocha and cranberry flavors. Pleasing elegance and a satisfying acid backbone. A good wine with refinement and elegance that is very drinkable now. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2002 Calera Selleck Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 429 cases, $58. · The shy nose opens with vigorous swirling with dark cherry and berry aromas enhanced by mushrooms and damp earth. Earth also shows in the flavors with toast and ripe plums. The fruit is backward and closed. Great potential here, but don’t even think about drinking this wine for another five years. Reviewed September 2, 2007 ARTICLE »

2000 Calera Jensen Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., pH 3.64, 919 cases, $40. Yields 1.06 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak. · This wine was very slightly corked. It still retained some attractive aromas of dark stone fruits, wild flowers and spice. Very smooth in the mouth with muscular yet soft tannins. Flavors of anise and black tea augment the core of dark fruit which has moderately faded. I would like to taste a bottle that is not corked. Unsatisfactory (flawed). Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

1999 Calera Mills Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., pH 3.76, 690 cases. Yields were .86 tons per acre. Aged for 16 months in 20% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Very nice aromatic profile of spiced plums, toast, incense, dark chocolate and old book. Tasty dried dark fruits with a hint of apricot. Grainy with plentiful tannins and a lengthy finish. This wine has held up remarkably well and is a real treat to drink. Very good. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »

1999 Calera Reed Vineyard Mt. Harlan Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., 240 cases. Yields were .91 tons per acre. Aged 16 months in 30% new French oak. Unfiltered. · Still great reddish-violet color. Aged bouquet of raisiny fruit, leather, cigar box and a hint of sherry. Delicate dark red fruit is overwhelmed by tannins. Soft in the mouth with hints of cinnamon, truffle and earth. Still has some charm and will appeal to fans of older Pinot Noir. Drink up, the tannins outweigh the fruit. Decent. Reviewed October 15, 2009 ARTICLE »