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J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines

Owner(s) Jerry Lohr
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J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines

J. Lohr was founded by Jerry Lohr, the son of a hard-working South Dakota farming family. In 1972 and 1973 he planted 280 acres of wine grapes including Pinot Noir in the Arroyo Seco appellation of Monterey County, and in 1974 built a winery in San Jose where the winery's white wines are produced. In 1988, a property near Paso Robles was bought, a winery built in 2001, and vineyards planted now encompassing 2,000 acres. Red wine production is done here. In that same year, Jerry expanded his vineyards in Arroyo Seco and now has there 900 acres of Chardonnay, Riesling, Valdiguié, and Pinot Noir.

Today, the winery practices sustainable winegrowing practices and is part of the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance.

J. Lohr is a family business, with Cynthia Lohr and Steve Lohr in management positions, producing over one million cases a year.

J. Lohr has the largest solar energy tracking system in the wine industry. The system makes the winery more energy independent and saves 75% of the energy used at the winery's Paso Robles operations.

J. Lohr produces four tiers of wines: J. Lohr Cuvée Series (Bordeaux blends), J. Lohr Vineyard Series (limited-production vineyard-designated wines), J. Lohr Estates (estate fruit), and J. Lohr Gesture (Rhone-inspired). J. Lohr also produces Central Coast wines under the Cypress Vineyards label.

Founder Jerry Lohr has developed a renewed interest in Pinot Noir. A vineyard-designated Pinot Noir from Fog's Reach Vineyard in the Arroyo Seco AVA is part of the Vineyard Series.

The winemaker since 1984 has been Jeff Meier. The white winemaker since 2013 is Karl Antink and Steve Peck oversees the red wine program.

The J. Lohr wines are available through the United States and in more than 25 countries worldwide. Tasting rooms in Paso Robles (J. Lohr Paso Robles Wine Center adjacent the winery) and San Jose (J. Lohr San Jose Wine Center adjacent the winery) are open daily. The J. Lohr Vineyards Room, also in San Jose, is a private event space.

Reviewed Wines

2011 J. Lohr Falcon’s Perch Monterey County Pinot Noir

13.63% alc., pH 3.79, TA 0.54, 19,800 cases, $17. From select vineyards in the Arroyo Seco region. Dijon clones are the backbone. 76% Pinot Noir and 24% Valdiguié (winemaker Steve Peck says Valdiguié goes beautifully with Pinot Noir). After a 3-day cold soak, fermented in 6- ton and 12-ton lots in open-top punch down tanks. Light pump overs with daily punch downs for 5 to 10 days. 100% MLF. Matured in stainless steel with 10% aged in neutral French oak barrels. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Lovely nose with aromas of dark berries, rose petals, and exotic spices that retain interest over time. Delicious and entirely seductive, with flavors of dark cherry and berry with complimentary notes of spice, anise and oak. Soft in the mouth, with mild tannins, commendable balance, and very respectable finishing intensity. The addition of Valdiguié gives this wine a unique flavor profile that is quite interesting. A superlative value priced wine that is widely available in the retail marketplace. Score: 90. Reviewed July 21, 2013 ARTICLE »

2011 J. Lohr October Night Arroyo Seco Monterey Chardonnay

14.9% alc., pH 3.58, TA 0.66, 1,693 cases, $25. 60% Dijon 809 (Musqué clone) blended with clone 76. 100% barrel fermented in 45% new Francois Frères French oak barrels using native yeast and aged sur lie for 12 months. · Pale golden yellow color and clear in the glass. A sophisticated offering with aromas of lemon drop, grilled peach, honeysuckle and chalk-laden soil. Plenty of fruit flavor including lemon, persimmon and white peach. The most striking feature of this wine is its oakdriven baking spice aroma and flavor. Soft, light, graceful and easy to like, the alcohol presents no notice. A terrific value considering the care and expense taken in its vinification. Very good. Reviewed June 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2011 J. Lohr Fog’s Reach Arroyo Seco Monterey Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., pH 3.67, TA 0.58, 2,824 cases, $35. Crafted entirely from estate grapes and comes from special blocks of J. Lohr’s Arroyo Seco vineyards. High fraction of clone 667, but also 115, 777 and Pommard 4. Yields 1.7 tons per acre. Harvest Brix 25.8º. J. Lohr has a “winery within a winery” to allow production of Pinot Noir in small lots. 100% de-stemmed, cultured yeast fermentation, Malolactic inoculated in stainless steel and completed in French oak barrels. Aged 8 months in 50% new barrels. · Moderately dark reddishpurple color in the glass. Very appealing nose offering scents of black cherries, wild forest berries and dark chocolate. Juicy and lively, with tasty flavors of dark chocolate coated cherries and berries with complimentary oak in the background. A crowd pleaser with nice balance, well-mannered tannins and a mouth filling presence that doesn’t overreach. Very good. Reviewed June 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 J. Lohr Arroyo Vista Vineyard Series Arroyo Seco Chardonnay

14.9% alc., pH 3.54, TA 0.67, 5,426 cases, $25. Sourced from prime Monterey vineyard acreage. Native fermentation, weekly stirring of each barrel from November 2010 to March 2011 (during MLF and five months after). Barrel-aged sur lie for 18 months in 42% new French oak barrels (mostly Francois Frères). · Light straw color and clear in the glass. Nicely perfumed with aromas of caramel apple, citrus, mossy rock, brioche and redwood. Delicious and classy, with flavors of white nectarine, lemony brioche, and pastry cream, accented with minerality. Soft in the mouth without evident tannins. A quality drink. Very good. Reviewed June 24, 2012 ARTICLE »

2010 J. Lohr Fog’s Reach Arroyo Seco Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., pH 3.78, TA 0.55, 2,427 cases, $35. Clones 115, 667, 777 and Pommard 4. Fruit was 100% de-stemmed. Aged 8 months in new and second fill French oak barrels. · Moderately dark reddish-purple hue in the glass. Evocative perfume of raspberry jam on toast. Richly endowed with flavors of black cap raspberries, dark strawberries, sassafras, herbs and complimentary toasty oak. An embracing wine with fruit that really draws your attention. Could use a little more acid zip. The finish goes on and on. Very good. Reviewed June 24, 2012 ARTICLE »

2009 J. Lohr Fog’s Reach Arroyo Seco Pinot Noir

14.9% alc., pH 3.62, TA 0.57, 1,113 cases, $35. Pommard 4 and Clone 777, with small amounts of 115 and 667. 100% de-stemmed, 5-day cold soak, inoculated primary and secondary fermentations, aged 8 months in 60% new and 40% third fill French oak barrels. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. Fruit-forward nose with bright aromas of black cherries, plum reduction sauce, spice and vanillin. Well-endowed with generous sweet black stone and blackberry fruit with a prominent accent of oak and a hint of brewed tea. The mouth feel is velvety and the tannins are supple. Finishes with a little alcoholic heat. Will benefit from another year in the bottle to further integrate the oak. Source: websites, tasting rooms, retail. Good. Reviewed July 1, 2011 ARTICLE »