Value Alert: 2006 Londer Pinot Noir Anderson Valley

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

If there's one thing I enjoy most about writing here on the site, it's sharing a recommendation for a value wine.  We've covered a number of these over the past couple of years- on average one a month.  I like to think I'm selective with these alerts.  Kind of like a retailer who, when you get an E-mail from them you stop what you're doing and quickly analyze the offer.  I realize everyone's exploring different categories and we don't always agree on what constitutes value, but I really enjoy it when I hear "Heck yeah- that sounds like a great value, I'm in!" or "Thanks for the tip on that Annabella Pinot Noir!"

A second thing I've enjoyed related to this site is connecting with like-minded value wine hunters- especially those in the Boston area.  Today's value came to me as a tip from one of our case club friends.  He was kind enough to pick up a bottle of this wine and it's a winner: the 2006 Londer Pinot Noir Anderson Valley.

We've talked a lot about how hard it is to find an outstanding domestic Pinot Noir for $20.  In fact, if you do a search on Wine Spectator for 90 point American Pinot for $20 and under for the 2006-2008 vintages only 2 come up. (They're both from Siduri if you're curious). Ironically, the Siduri is hard to find in the Massachusetts market for $20 and under, whereas the Londer we're discussing today has a release price of $35 although it's available for significantly less than $20 if you look around.  More on that in a moment, let's talk a little more about the wine.

90 Points Wine Spectator: $35 Release Price “Fresh and floral, restrained and elegant, even understated, with dark plum, black cherry, herb and savory berry flavors that linger. Drink now through 2011. 3,047 cases made. –JL”

89 Point Cellar Tracker Median $27.63 Average Community Value My Notes: “Beautiful Anderson Valley Pinot Noir. Vibrant strawberries with a silky finish. An amazing value if you can find it south of $20.”  Footnote: This is real Pinot made by real people in Anderson Valley.

88 Wine Advocate, 91 Connoisseur's Guide to California Wine.

All of this boils down to this being rock-solid Anderson Valley Pinot Noir.  I'd consider $30 the price point at which it becomes relatively easy to find a bottle of outstanding California Pinot Noir.  Plugging this into the wwpQPR Calculator we get value index of 2.08: Very Good.

So where do you get it for less than $20?  The Wine & Cheese Cask in Somerville, MA.  They've got this wine for $17.99 on the shelves somehow -and- through Monday March 8th, 2010 they're running a sale where if you buy 12 or more mixed bottles you get 20% off (or 10% off 6 or more mixed bottles).  This brings the price down to $14.40.  A stunning value in my book.  I think I've found my new house Pinot.

Check 'em out:
The Wine & Cheese Cask
407 Washington St.
Somerville, MA 02413
617- 623-8656

If you'd like to be part of our Boston-area wine Case Club where we combine purchasing power to save money on wines like these please drop me an E-mail at and I'll add you to the list.


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