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"Taste the Wines and Get on this List"

Pinot Report - Issue #103 - May 15, 2015

By Greg Walters


A newcomer to my sphere was Eric Kent Wines this time. As you will see, I really enjoyed meeting with owner and winemaker Kent Humphrey—he’s a refreshingly interesting wine guy who has a lot to say about life and aesthetics. He is the kind of guy who should be making Pinot and if you try a few wines from this issue, make sure his is one.

Eric Kent Wines was a really interesting visit for me. One of the things I find really interesting about writing about Pinot is the people I meet. I really liked Kent Humphrey the minute I met him. He is a curious guy, a real thinker about wine. He’s been acquiring knowledge and experience on wines for years but it wasn’t until he was 33 that he made any wine. He’s learned from a lot of the great guys in the Sonoma County area so he knows what he’s up to and the wines he makes certainly show that.

Kent works with his wife, Colleen Teitgen-Humphrey, and his sister, Renee Humphrey on the winery project as well. The other side of the label, if you will, is the incredible selection of art that goes with each bottling. The pieces I’ve seen are really great and I would encourage you to think of that in the context of the depth of this guy and the wines. Wines produced include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Rose and Syrah. Pinot bottlings are from the Stiling Vineyard from the Russian River Valley and then the Sonoma Coast wines, Sascha Marie and Small Town Pinots. I’m telling you, taste the wines and get on this list; these are really nice wines with a lot of interesting character.

94 pts. – 2013 Sascha Marie Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
Medium-deep ruby color; deep, earthy cherry aromas though still young; rich and deep flavors of cherry and earth with complex notes still emerging; needs time; good structure and balance; long finish. Complex and rich Pinot that is a baby now and needs time to develop. Will be worth that time. 

94 pts. – 2012 Stiling Vineyard Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley
Medium-deep ruby color; rich cherry and clove aromas; deep, lush complex flavors of cherry and baking spice; nice oak and clove notes; good structure and balance; long finish. This is a deep and lush Pinot with really nice character.

93 pts. – 2012 Sascha Marie Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
Deep ruby color; rich, deep aromas of earth and herbal; rich, earthy cherry flavors; big mouthfeel and texture; oak and tannin notes; good structure and balance; long finish. Full, rich Pinot with a lot of nuance as well.

93 pts. – 2012 Small Town Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
Medium-deep ruby color; lush, spicy red cherry aromas; complex, cherry flavors with herb and spice notes; silky texture; good structure and balance; long finish. This Pinot has a lot of spicy, herbal notes; great flavors.

92 pts. – 2013 Small Town Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast
Medium-deep ruby color; lush, earthy cherry aromas; deep, earthy cherry flavors with lots of herb notes; silky texture; good structure and balance; long finish. Herbal and earthy, this is a great Pinot for mushroom pasta.

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