Bow & Arrow Rhinestones 2021
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Bow & Arrow: "This is the way I imagine Rhinestones in my mind. The classic Johan Gamay expression of dried rose petals and graphite mixed with the Pinot vibes that only this vineyard can produce. (In no small part due to Pommard and Wadenswil clones matched with the cool temperatures of Johan.) For the very first time the Gamay and Pinot was picked on the same day but as usual were fermented and aged separately. Gamay needs its concrete to do what it does and the Pinot loves its older barriques. That's the way. This is a wine of filigree and finesse. A quiet storm. And really the most beautiful expression to date."
We like the tongue-in-cheek name; since they can't make an authentic diamond (in the form of an actual Old World wine) they fake it with a Rhinestone. There's nothing fake about Rhinestones' goodness; it takes the best of the two varietals and marries them into a fragrant, refreshingly pure red. I especially like the snappiness of Gamay towards the finish, that peppery black raspberry note adding an extra dimension.
2015 vintage notes
92 points from John Gilman, View from the Cellar: The 2015 version of Rhinestones is a blend of sixty percent pinot noir and forty percent gamay. The wine is a tad tight when first opened, but with a bit of swirling offers up a lovely bouquet of red and black cherries, a touch of pepper, spit-roasted meats, fresh herbs and dark soil tones. On the palate the wine is bright, full-bodied and tangy, with a fine core, lovely focus and grip and a long, moderately tannic finish. This is 12.5 percent octane and absolutely laser-like on the palate, with superb backer energy. I am sure this is intended as an early quaffer for restaurants in Portland, but this has the balance and structure to also age very well indeed! 2016- 2030."
We look down on Scott and Dana Frank's Bow & Arrow winery. Literally. They're in the basement of our building, and we have a floor-to-ceiling window that affords a great view of their production space (which as I type is buzzing with harvest activity). All joking aside, we've developed deep respect for Bow & Arrow's honest, largely Loire-valley inspired wines, and for their good-humored approach to branding.