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B.R. Cohn Winery: Noted Cab Producer Releases Stellar Pinot

Winemaker Tom Montgomery joined B.R. Cohn Winery in 2003 and has continued the tradition of award winning wines that follow in the tradition of those made by previous B.R. Cohn winemakers including Helen Turley and Merry Edwards. After obtaining a degree in enology from California State University at Fresno, he spent time at the original Napa Cellars, Cosentino and Conn Creek before joining B.R. Cohn. Montgomery also crafts a Pinot Noir for Valerie’s Vineyard, one of my personal favorite Carneros Pinot Noirs (

B.R. Cohn, founded in Sonoma Valley in 1984 on land originally acquired by founder Bruce R. Cohn in 1974, is best known for its Olive Hill Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon and perhaps the extra-virgin olive oils produced there. The French Picholine olive trees planted in the mid 1870s surround the estate, giving the inspiration for is name, Olive Hill Estate Vineyards. As a pinotphile, it was a 2008 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir from B.R. Cohn that really caught my attention.

2008 B.R. Cohn Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

14.5% alc., pH 3.64, 1,700 cases, $40. Sourced from Lera’s Vineyard (33%), Dutton Vineyard (30%), Rochioli Vineyard (19%) and Simon Oliver Vineyard (18%). Clones are Pommard, 667 and 777. Cold soaked 4 to 5 days. Whole berry and whole cluster fermentation in 3 and 5 ton open-top fermenters with indigenous and Assmanshausen yeasts. Aged for 18 months in 64% new and 36%1-year-old Francois Frères, Louis Latour and Rousseau oak barrels. Unfiltered. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. Terrific nose replete with slightly confected fresh Bring cherries and allspice. Delicious essence of ripe cherries and strawberries accented by flavors of cherry cola, spice cabinet, and Red Vines. Elegant and seamless with deft use of oak, a silky smooth texture, and a finish that sails along. Très Russian River.

B.R. Cohn Winery and Olive Oil Company tasting room is housed in a building once used as a stagecoach stop for Wells Fargo, where horses on their route from Santa Rosa to Sonoma stopped to be watered and formerly was the home of winery owner Bruce Cohn. The tasting room is open daily and tours are offered by appointment (800-330-4064, ext 124). The Russian River Valley Pinot Noir is available on the winery website at

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