WTN: An American in Helsinki

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WTN: An American in Helsinki

Postby Otto » Sat Sep 16, 2006 3:40 pm

A while back I tasted this wine in a trade fair. I fell in love. I'm happy to say that now that this is available in our (usually pathetic) monopoly, I am still in love. This is an elegant and terroir driven wine. On my first taste I wrote that this is a dead ringer for an earthy Burgundy à la Savigny-lès-Beaune or Gevrey-Chambertin. This time around I'll have to disagree: this is Essence of Pinot Noir, but it is not Burgundy. This is, as it should be considering that it isn't based in Burgundy, a very successful variant of the Pinot theme in a different terroir. Despite its rather daunting price (for a student budget anyway), I think I'll be buying a couple more of this.

  • 2001 Domaine Drouhin Oregon Pinot Noir - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley (9/16/2006) 13,5% 39,50€
    Light coloured as Pinot should be. The nose is quite lovely and as typical Pinot as I can hope to find: earthy with beetroots and fine red toned fruit. It is mineral and bordering on metallic, yet staying well withing the lovable sphere of minerality. The palate has a fine concetration of fruit without being over the top in any way. Rather there is a lovely savoury vegetal and mineral component balancing the fruit. It is a bit tannic also and needs more age. It has a curious but delicious salty edge to both the nose and the palate. Wonderful, fresh and long aftertaste. This is quite a lovely wine.

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Re: WTN: An American in Helsinki

Postby Robin Garr » Mon Sep 18, 2006 8:59 am

Otto Nieminen wrote:2001 Domaine Drouhin Oregon Pinot Noir - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley (9/16/2006) 13,5% 39,50€


Otto, pricey for a student it may be, but it's surprising that you got a price right in line with its U.S. retail, which typically runs from $40 to $45 for the 2001 vintage, per Wine-Searcher, although more recent vintages are in the $20s.

I like DDO also, although when I participated in a vertical of about 1990 through 1996 a few years ago, it seemed that there had been a sharp turn toward spoofulated Parkerismo toward the end of that period, which was a shame. From your description, it sounds as if they may have turned back!
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Re: WTN: An American in Helsinki

Postby Tyler Brebbermann » Mon Sep 18, 2006 9:16 am

When I was in Germany I would order a bottle of American wine every now and then I was also pretty surprised that I would pay the same (or in some cases I remember even paying less than) what I would see it for on wine searcher for the states. I would check purley out of interest. I always attributed this to the amount of taxes we pay on alcohol here in the states and the relatively higher cost to sell it (licenses etc). In Germany to sell alcohol all one has to do is registar a business and hang a sign saying we won't sell to minors. This used to get to me, but I justified it by thinking of our gases prices in comparison to theirs and figured we were still getting the better deal :wink: . When I left gas was 1.17 euros / l = $ 4.42 / gl.
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Re: WTN: An American in Helsinki

Postby Robin Garr » Mon Sep 18, 2006 9:58 am

Tyler Brebbermann wrote:When I left gas was 1.17 euros / l = $ 4.42 / gl.


We're catching up fast!
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Re: WTN: An American in Helsinki

Postby Otto » Mon Sep 18, 2006 5:00 pm

Robin Garr wrote:Otto, pricey for a student it may be, but it's surprising that you got a price right in line with its U.S. retail, which typically runs from $40 to $45 for the 2001 vintage, per Wine-Searcher, although more recent vintages are in the $20s.

I like DDO also, although when I participated in a vertical of about 1990 through 1996 a few years ago, it seemed that there had been a sharp turn toward spoofulated Parkerismo toward the end of that period, which was a shame. From your description, it sounds as if they may have turned back!


Wow. For once we're not getting ripped off. Wonders never cease.

This wasn't spoofulated. I'm glad to hear they took a turn for the better.
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Bring me a bottle...

Postby Anders Källberg » Tue Sep 19, 2006 6:56 pm

this is available in our (usually pathetic) monopoly

Thanks for the info, Otto. I will try to get someone visiting Finland bring home a bottle or two for me. I visited DDO in 2003 and was impressed, in particular by their Cuvées, but also their straight Oregon Pinot Noir.
Cheers, Anders

PS. Now you know what to bring when/if you come to Stockholm... ;-) (I'll pay for it, of course)
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Re: Bring me a bottle...

Postby Jenise » Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:22 pm

Otto, DDO is one of my favorite Oregon producers. Lovely wines that start slow and patiently gain weight and complexity as they age. They're usually 10 year wines, and the 01 might have even longer legs--for most producers, the vintage produced wines of both elegance and structure. I'm pleased to hear that the 01 is progressing so nicely (and a little surprised that it's open now).
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Re: Bring me a bottle...

Postby Isaac » Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:37 pm

When you say "ten-year wine", do you mean drinkable up to ten years from the vintage date, or that it won't really come into its own until ten years past the vintage date?
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Re: WTN: An American in Helsinki

Postby Tim York » Wed Sep 20, 2006 3:37 pm

Otto,

Sorry to change the subject but

"our usually pathetic monopoly"

raises a question. How can Finland get away with maintaining a distribution monopoly? I thought that such creatures were proscribed by the competition rules of the EU.

Does Finland, like the UK (where happily there is no monopoly), also try to make life difficult for mail orderers and travellers importing wine from other EU countries?
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Re: Bring me a bottle...

Postby Otto » Thu Sep 21, 2006 3:41 pm

Anders, I'll happily store a couple for you! Though considering how busy I am with uni + work, I'd hope you'd come to Finland instead! :)

Jenise, what you say makes me a little worried. If it's supposed to be closed now, then I doubt I'll like it when open ;)

Tim, Finland gets away with the monopoly because it has lobbied in the EU. For some concessions Finland was allowed to keep the government monopoly. I beleive Sweden is in the same situation (Anders will correct me). Finland makes life hell for those trying to import stuff from abroad. There have been some easings to the ordering part, so I've been buying a couple of cases (Rieslings, of course) - but it's still unclear whether one is allowed to order via Mail or not, so there is always the possibility of the wines being confiscated. It's a messy system and no one seems to know what is legal!
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Re: Bring me a bottle...

Postby Jenise » Thu Sep 21, 2006 4:14 pm

Otto, don't let me worry you. What you described is classic DDO at it's openest. Maybe this vintage didn't shut down for them--my surprise was based on the St. Innocent 01's which are indeed asleep right now.
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