2003 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Sonoma County (USA, California, Sonoma County)

California, Pinot Noir, Red Wine, Sonoma, Sonoma County, USA

I really tried to give this a fair and balanced shake, but even after two days of tasting this and following its evolution, I just can’t say this is an excellent or even very good wine for me. The nose smells of candied fruit. On the palate, this has very nice texture and mouthfeel, but the flavors just come across as too cloying for me. I just see no finesse and minerality in this wine. I think it’s true to its geographical heritage, but I’m beginning to think this style of wine no longer is for me. With that said, my friend Mike who was over for dinner last night loved the wine so it’s clearly a personal issue. Pass if you’re a Burgundy guy/gal. Buy if you love California Pinot.

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I am not a professional wine taster, nor do I have any professional training in the wine trade. I am a wine enthusiast who has spent countless hours tasting wines of many different styles. My palate is not aligned with a single wine critic, and I call all wines "as I taste them". My site is a source of tasting notes and wine recommendations as well as warnings without conflict of interest. You'll just have to figure out how your palate aligns with mine. My palate generally tends to veer towards Old-World wines that put a premium on terroir and lovely balance and finesse, rather than raw power...please keep that in mind as you read my notes.

3 thoughts on “2003 Williams Selyem Pinot Noir Sonoma County (USA, California, Sonoma County)”

  1. I have had many 2003 pinots that have lost their luster. I think the entire vintage was not for the long haul. In fact, my only remaining 2003 WS are SVD which people tell me need time. I have moved on to my 2004s, now with 1-2 years they should be getting there. I also have read Ted Lemon say that 2006s should be consumed before 2005.


  2. I agree with Rustin on this one. I would definitely not give up on W-S, you just have to give them some time. I’ve been buying up some mid-1990s ones at auction and they are superb. The Sonoma County and the Central Coast I think should be consumed early anyway while you wait for the SVDs. The SC is definitely <>not<> indicative of the quality of W-S, 2003 was a freak vintage and Bob Cabral didn’t really start firing on all cylinders until 2004 IMHO. So, don’t give up if you are a Burgphile. They can be very elegant Pinots.


  3. Ben.Take a look at the 03 Flax note I wrote. That stuff reminded me of some Zins I’ve had. I know that was a tough vintage, but when you’re drinking Pinot blind and you think it could be Zin…you’re in big trouble.


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