New releases from Kutch: truly elegant Californian Pinot Noir

california chardonnay pinot noir

New releases from Kutch: truly elegant Californian Pinot Noir


The new releases from Jamie Kutch are out. You can read more about him here: he’s making particularly elegant expressions of Pinot Noir from northern California, and also a lovely Chardonnay.


Kutch Chardonnay 2016 Sonoma Coast, California
12.5% alcohol. Beautiful stuff, combining sweet ripe pear and apple fruit with some lively grapefruit freshness, and also a subtly smoky, mineral twist. There’s good acidity here, and a slightly bitter twist that offsets the fruit nicely. Complex and beguiling with concentration, balance and finesse. The fruit profile hints at California, but the acid structure and poise is very European. I really like it, and it should age really well. Doesn’t seem to be as overtly reductive as the two previous Kutch Chardonnays. 94/100

Kutch Pinot Noir 2016 Sonoma Coast, California
12.1% alcohol. This is sappy and focused with sweet red cherries and plums. It’s really fresh, with good acidity, but there’s a supple, almost silky quality and some sweet fruit. The tannins are really well managed: they’re present, but they aren’t grippy. Although this is picked early, it has some richness and generosity, and the sappy green hints are really nicely integrated. I like the way this wine combines ripeness and freshness. This is really attractive and supple, with lovely balance. 94/100

Kutch Pinot Noir Falstaff Vineyard 2016 Sonoma Coast, California
12% alcohol. There’s a haunting aromatic quality to this wine, with floral red cherries and some fine herbal characters. On the palate there’s a silky texture to the sweet cherry, raspberry and plum fruit with a fine herbal twist and a touch of earthy savouriness. Ripe but with a fresh, sappy bite and some good structure. A beguiling, pretty wine, but with seriousness. It picks up weight on day two, with the herbal character gaining prominence. 94/100

Kutch Pinot Noir McDougall Ranch 2016 Sonoma Coast, California
12% alcohol. There’s some taut, firm, grippy structure here. It’s quite burly and dense with some sweet black fruits but also more savoury notes of tar and herbs. Grippy with some spicy focus, and a bit of sweetness on the finish. Has some plum and damson, with a bitter twist. On day two, this has opened out really nicely with sweet, supple fruit. It’s structured but really fresh and supple. A serious effort showing real elegance, and on the third day this is really singing. 96/100

Kutch Pinot Noir Signal Ridge Vineyard 2016 Mendocino Ridge, California
12% alcohol. This is very floral and expressive with lovely red cherry and raspberry fruit, with finesse and a supple, sappy edge. At its core lies a lovely sweetness, accented with some lively acid characters (is there just a hint of volatility lurking in the background, but framing the fruit nicely?) with a real finesse and purity. It’s nervous and expressive with real prettiness, but also a bit of bite. 94/100

Kutch Pinot Noir Bohan Vineyard 2016 Sonoma Coast, California
11.3% alcohol. This is really delicate with a slightly weedy, herbal edge (but a very attractive one) to leafy cherry and berry fruits on the nose. It’s quite autumnal. The palate is very fresh and supple with fine spiciness and some dried herbs, as well as elegant, supple cherry fruit. There’s even a hint of sweet vanilla in the background, and a twist of aniseed. This is a very elegant, delicate yet full flavoured Pinot. 94/100

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