The Degenerate Cyclist's Guide to Wine: Installation I- Echelon 2005 Pinot Noir--88%

Preface: Quite obviously, I am not a trained wine critic, and if you are reading this then neither are you, so don't try to act the part. I do drink a fair amount of wine and feel that I know how to pick a good bottle. I want to stress as much as possible that this is not meant to pretentious whatsoever, I'm just trying to pass along some new suggestions for the common drunk cyclist. I solemnly swear to you; dear reader, there will be absolutely no making up shit that no one can actually taste, giving you bullshit about the legs, or any of that other stuff that the majority of people who read this nonsense couldn't care less about, this about what tastes good: The Degenerate Cyclists Guide to Wine. My goal here is simply provide an honest, but self-admittedly disorganized, unprofessional, and technically invalid wine review. I hope it helps, and I would be interested to hear criticisms of either the review or the wine itself, cheers.

The "Review"
The Echelon Vineyard's 2005 Pinot Noir from Sonoma Valley is a great bottle for those with a keen, yet thrifty palette at $13;a relatively high retail for this 750ml standard bottle at a local Harris Teeter Grocery chain one may find this bottle for as little as $9 if the buyer knows where to look. A friend who works as a sales rep for a wine distributor who had a few bottles months before it could be found on shelves in this area. After saving the cork for a few months to remember the name and year, it finally became available on retail shelves.
The Good Part: Uncorking and Drinking: The Echelon fits the mold of a classic Californian Pinot Noir, the 2005 has no surprises corresponding to its specific vintage or The Sonoma Valley vineyard it hails from. This wine surpassed my expectations for a budget Pinot. Featuring a great smooth flavor, and a consistent body with other wines of its origin and vintage, a nice spicy nip to the taste, and a very pleasant soft berry aroma. The Echelon is an excellent drinking wine, After uncorking (real cork, no synthetics) Ithe bottle was left to mellow for about 20-30minutes (more out of ritual than any functional purpose involving tannins.) The traditional tasting steps were completed with a clean palette and afterwards the reviewer proceeded to finish of the bottle over the course of the evening accompanied by an herb goat cheese served atop wheat crackers that tasted great as one would expect. I could also see the Echelon being an exceptionally meal-friendly Pinot which is in general something I am not too keen on; yet the 2005 has a very gentle flavor that still maintains a flavorful complexity flavor that would suit a fine meal with subtle flavors that might be over powered by other wines. All in all, the Echelon 2005 Pinot is an excellent bottle for the money, very enjoyable and I plan to purchase it again. %88 in my book.

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