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The 2011 Walter Hansel North Slope is Pinot Noir from the Sonoma region in California and the ABV is 14.2%. The 2010 Alta Maria is Pinot Noir from the Santa Maria Valley in California and the ABV is 14%.
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: The best combined price on Wine Searcher for these wines is $56.94 as of today!
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This 2-pack includes 1 bottle of 2011 - Walter Hansel North Slope Pinot Noir, and 1 bottle of 2010 - Alta Maria Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley.
2011 - Walter Hansel North Slope Pinot Noir
"The 2011 Pinot Noir North Slope is delicate, sensual and totally beautiful from the very first taste. Here it is the wine's silkiness that stands out most. Sweet red berries, flowers and mint all flow through to the finish. This is a decidedly restrained version of the North Slope. Crushed flowers, tobacco and plums add complexity on the finish. My overall impression is that the 2011 will be an early drinker because of its modest structure, especially vis-a-vis the 2010. At the same time, it is impossible to miss the wine's energy." (07/13) - 92+ Pts Antonio Galloni - Vinous
"Bright ruby-red. Red berries and fresh rose on the fragrant nose and in the mouth. Juicy and precise, with good clarity and lift. Silky tannins give shape to the clinging finish, with the floral element repeating. This precocious pinot is drinking very nicely right now." (06/13) - 90 Pts Josh Raynolds - International Wine Cellar
"Walter Hansel was a lifelong wine enthusiast who had the vision to plant his estate's original 250 vines in 1978. Today, Stephen, Walter's son, has taken up where his father left off, pursuing his vision of producing world-class Burgundian-styled Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, all from the Russian River Valley."
"Steve Hansel's friend, famed winemaker Tom Rochioli, helped him in the early stages of his wine education by inviting him to work a couple of harvests at the Rochioli vineyards. Steve performed his first solo attempt in 1996 out of his garage."
"At Walter Hansel Winery, the emphasis is on low yields (a miniscule range from 1.5 to 2.7 tons/acre) for greater complexity. Since all their grapes are grown on their own property, they can exercise strict control in the vineyards, which are planted with 5 Pinot and 5 Chardonnay clones. Each clone was chosen for its specific acid and flavor variations."
"All of Steve's fruit is hand-harvested, and it is re-examined again at the winery. Hansel makes an average of 9 total passes through each vineyard. Each pass is time consuming and expensive but Stephen feels the vine rewards him with more concentrated flavors."
"The winery uses only natural yeast during fermentation. Fining and filtration are minimal. The Pinots are held on the lees without racking for 12 months. The Chardonnays are whole cluster fermented and gently pressed to extract the juice. The cooperage varies from year-to-year, cuvÃ©e-to-cuvÃ©e, but none of the wine is aged on entirely new oak. One- and two-year-old barrels are always employed." - Distributor
This wine was also rated 88 Points by the Wine Spectator.
2010 - Alta Maria Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley
"Deep ruby color; complex aromas of stewed cherry, spice and herbs; rich and deep plum and cherry flavors with spice and herbal notes; some tannin and oak; good structure and balance; long finish. Full and complex Pinot that is a great match for grilled meats." (03/13) - 93 Pts Pinot Report
"Vivid red. Deeply pitched cherry and raspberry on the pungent, floral-accented nose. Silky and focused, offering bitter cherry, red fruit compote and musky herb flavors that show good depth and grip. Picks up a smoky nuance with air, along with a touch of candied rose. Closes on an earthy beetroot note, with silky tannins and very good length." (12/13) - 90 Pts Josh Raynolds - International Wine Cellar
"This harnesses dramatic ripeness without over-reaching, offering enough length and freshness to support its dense layers of blackberry-laden fruit. Grippy tannins provide a structural counterpoint to that sumptuousness, suggesting the appetizing bitterness of carob and setting the wine up for roasted pork loin." (04/13) - 90 Pts Wine & Spirits
"2010 is our 6th vintage! Garnet red in appearance, this 2010 Pinot Noirâs captivating aromas are spicy with ripe cherries and strawberries. A luscious mid-palate comes through upon tasting, but lies well within the true character of this variety. Medium-bodied throughout, with balance and a great fruit presence that is a classic mark of the vintage." - Winery
"Alta Maria Vineyards is owned by winemaker Paul Wilkins, James Ontiveros and Sao Anash. Paul and James met while in college at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and help found Vines to Wines. While still in college, Paul landed a job with renowned winemaker John Alban and worked his way to the top of the ranks. After eight years at Alban Winery, with the last few as winemaker, Paul left to consult for other wineries. Around the same time, James planted an eight acre plot of Pinot Noir on his family's estate, Rancho Ontiveros in Santa Maria, California. Together they partnered with Sao, a former executive director of the Santa Barbara Vintner's Association to start Alta Maria Vineyards. Alta Maria means "Higher or Heavenly Mary," and is also the name given by James' ancestor, Don Juan Pacifico Ontiveros to the Santa Maria River. The homage to the past continues with the wine label which features hand-hewn iron nails that were used by homesteaders before the Industrial Revolution." - Distributor
This wine was also rated 88 Points by the Wine Advocate and Burghound, 87 Points by the Wine Enthusiast, and 86 Points by the Wine Spectator.