After driving from the Pacific Ocean through a 10-mile stretch of towering redwoods, Toulouse Vineyards and Winery suddenly loomed up our left. It looked inviting, and we stopped for a very pleasant tasting. It was one of my first introductions to Anderson Valley Pinot Noir, and I was suitably impressed. Phillips Hill Winery (which we had passed just a few miles before) apparently used grapes from one of the Toulouse vineyards to make this wine. Noting that, I was quick to buy. And, tonight, I have no regrets.
The color is a deep ruby with only slight bricking. Crushed raspberries--black and red--with flowers and spice. The Anderson Valley traits are apparent: very pure fruit, subtlety and grace. Lovely texture. Long finish. As much as I like Russian River Pinot, I believe that Anderson Valley is a cut above.