I had a bad week of work last week. Well, tough more than bad. Scraped knees, dust-filled nostrils, and trunk full of sweaty t-shirts was the norm Monday thru Friday. But, despite my grungy appearance, I stopped in Exit 9 Wine and Liquor Warehouse for the first time after listening to their radio jingle at least a thousand times on the radio over the last 4 years. I always wanted to go there, but never knew whether to exit off the highway heading east or west. East it is.
They have a nice little New Zealand rack, much better than most, but not quite the range of Purdy’s. I was most surprised by some small production Zinfandels from Cline that I have never seen in a retail store on the east coast.
Beautifully developed and nicely portioned fruit. I find this quality typical of New Zealand Pinot Noir where fruit presence is rarely lacking. Great vegi and floral notes with a contained, back-end sweetness that appears at the right time. Strawberry, cherry, jasmine, and ancillary pink grapefruit notable on both nose and palate.
Pine, portabella, and pepper—old-world qualities of forest and funk. It’s not all bright fruit and baking spices, although there is a slight Fruit Roll-Up taste parallel to the strawberry and a dense vanilla bean on the finish, which is both lengthy and tagged with pepper and yogurt.
Slightly effervescent mouthfeel and a pepper zip in the nose. This is the most serious NZ Pinot I’ve tasted this summer. There is no shortness of supporting aromas, flavors and textures. About $17 at Exit 9 Wine & Liquor Warehouse Inc. located at The Crossing in Clifton Park, NY.