12th Annual Pinot Noir Shootout and Summit Results

by barbara on April 22, 2014

Results of the 12th Annual Pinot Noir Shootout and Summit here
Korman_030914_PinotSummit_34Pinot Noir, the most exciting, confounding, and challenging wine there is has been the focus of the Pinot Noir Shootout and Summit for 12 years. We never tire of tasting these wines, enjoying old friends and discovering new ones.

In this, the 12th Annual Pinot Noir Shootout, the Affairs of the Vine professional judging panel tasted 447 Pinot Noirs from all over the globe. Many of the wines we taste continue to delight and fascinate us. Those will be noted here. Every year we find outstanding examples of Pinot Noir from wineries that we know and we’re often pleasantly surprised by wines submitted from producers new to us.

The Pinot Noir Shootout is the most comprehensive and focused tasting of Pinot Noir in the U.S. The judging panel, an incredibly diverse panel of 46 wine professionals, tasted 440+ wines over a three-month period. Just 32 wines are tasted by the experts per day, allowing the judges to be completely immersed, focused and fair to the wines. Palate fatigue is not a factor in our tastings. The wines are tasted completely blind without reference to appellation, vintage or price. Each wine submitted to the Pinot Noir Shootout was tasted a minimum of twice. The top rated wines were then tasted by our panel of experts at the Pinot Noir Shootout Finals on January 4, 2014. Again, each judge was responsible for tasting, scoring, and analyzing only 32 wines.

Korman_030914_PinotSummit_36Detailed notes accompany the scores. Gender counts…scores and comments are recorded separately and are posted on the Affairs of the Vine website for all wines of note.

The Pinot Noir Shootout is the only wine competition in which the judges’ conclusions are put to the test by a large unbiased group of wine lovers. 44 of the top-rated wines were featured at The 12th Annual Pinot Noir Summit on March 9, 2014 at at the Golden Gate Club in the Presidio.

At the Summit, over 400 adventurous Pinot Noir lovers, seeking true splendor in the glass, experienced and evaluated the 44 luscious Pinot Noirs in a blind tasting at the Pinot Noir Summit. The 44 wines represented some of the best wines from this year’s Pinot Noir Shootout. An additional 300 people joined the festivities for the Grand Awards Tasting on Sunday evening.

JudgingPNS_PinotSummit_32In a distinctly different format and atmosphere from other wine-tasting events, the attendees blind tasted the wines and pitted their palates against the expert judging panel. The wines were divided into 2 groups of 22 wines each (the Black Group and the Silver Group). The wines were dressed in Vino Sleeves and identified by a random color. The male and female votes were tallied separately.


After tasting the wines blind, the Wine Lovers at The Pinot Summit were given 5 chips (red for the women and blue for the men) and were invited to cast their votes for their favorite wines with the chips provided. They could vote for as many as 5 wines or as few as one, indicating their passion for each wine by the number of chips they dropped in the ballot box.

The Pinot Noir lovers spoke out loud and clear at the 12th Annual Pinot Noir Summit. In an unmistakable statement of preference, they embraced wines of elegance and varietal authenticity rather than burly Syrah-like Pinots, the muscular Pinot Noirs made popular by a few influential reviewers and their publications.

The Pinot Noir delegates agreed with the panel…the wines tasted were fantastic! The Pinot Noir Summit delegates however, did not rank the wines in the same order. Here are the winners as announced by Rusty Gaffney, the Prince of Pinot, on Sunday night, March 9th at the Grand Tasting Awards Ceremony.

12th Annual Pinot Noir Summit Results:

Women at the 12th Annual Pinot Noir Summit:
Female Wine Lovers: First Place
Exuberance by Canihan 2010 Reserve & Estate Canihan Family Vineyard Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast $65.00 LILAC
Female Wine Lovers: Second Place
Gallegos 2011 Boekenoogen Vineyard Pinot Noir, Santa Lucia Highlands $38.00 WHITE
Female Wine Lovers: Third Place
Anderson Oaks Vineyard 2011 Estate Jamboree Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast $30.00 MAGENTA

Men at the 12th Annual Pinot Noir Summit:
Male Wine Lovers: First Place
Asuncion Ridge Vineyards 2010 Estate Pinot Noir, Central Coast $38.00 SALMON
Male Wine Lovers: Second Place
The Winery SF 2012 Pinot Noir, North Coast $35.00 COBALT
Male Wine Lovers: Third Place
Thralls 2012 Roma’s Vineyard Pinot Noir, Anderson Valley $42.00 GOLD

Shootout Panel Results:
Female Judges: First Place
Handley Cellars 2010 Pinot Noir, Anderson Valley $32.00 BRONZE
Female Judges: Second Place
Anderson Oaks Vineyard 2011 Estate Jamboree Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast $30.00 MAGENTA
Women Judges: Third Place
Gloria Ferrer Pinot Noir, Carneros $28.00 PERIWINKLE

Male Judges: First Place
Bouchaine 2011 Estate Terraces Pinot Noir, Napa Valley-Carneros $60.00 TURQUOISE
Male Judges: Second Place
Holman Ranch Vineyards & Winery 2010 Hunter’s Cuvee Pinot Noir, Carmel Valley $40.00 AQUA
Male Judges: Third Place
Comanche Cellars 2011 CharEva Vineyard Pinot Noir, Arroyo Seco $30.00 LIGHT YELLOW

The Male Wine Lovers did not select the same as the Male Judging panel. The Female Wine Lovers and Female Judges had only one wine in common in their top three. What does that prove? Who’s right? Who wins? Everybody!

Gold & Silver Medal Blanc de Noirs and Brut Roses

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngSILVER MEDAL Blason de Bourgogne Cremant de Bourgogne, Burgundy, $18.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Breathless Blanc de Noirs, Sonoma County, $30.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Chandon Blanc de Noirs, California, $22.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Domaine Carneros 2009 Brut, Carneros, $28.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Gloria Ferrer 2008 Brut Rose, Carneros, $45.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Gloria Ferrer Blanc de Noirs, Carneros, $22.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngSILVER MEDAL Graham Beck Brut, South Africa, $15.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngSILVER MEDAL Gruet Brut Rose, New Mexico, $17.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL J Cuvee 20, Sonoma County, $28.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngSILVER MEDAL Korbel Brut Rose, California, $12.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Mumm Napa Rose, Napa Valley, $23.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Roederer Estate Brut, Anderson Valley, $23.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Schramsberg 2008 Brut Rose, North Coast, $42.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Schug 2010 Rouge de Noirs, Carneros, $35.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Segura Viudas Aria Brut , Cava $19.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Summerhill Pyramid Cipes Rose, Okanagan, BC, $27.00

http://affairsofthevine.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/champagne_cork.pngGOLD MEDAL Woodworth Vineyards 2011 Luna de Luz Blanc de Noirs, Temecula Valley $30.00

The wines worthy of note are reviewed here. Each wine is awarded a numerical scores by the male and female panels and are awarded medals as indicated.

Complete scores and comments by gender here

The Pinot Noir Summit is a production of Affairs of the Vine

Tickets go on sale February 1, 2015…Buy your tickets early, we sell out every year. –

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Rowland Archer August 14, 2014 at 1:37 pm

I love the fact that there was such a diverse outcome – whether you’re an expert or a beginner, people like different things – and wine is about as subjective as it gets. My focus with Pinot tends to be the nose – sometimes it’s so good I forget to drink 🙂 ! So even if it’s very nice on the palate, if there’s no intoxicating aroma to start with, it loses some points to me. To others, that’s just not as important.


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