Best of the Best 2012: Domestic Red Wines: Aubert 2009 Pinot Noir UV-SL Vineyard Sonoma Coast

Mark Aubert’s career has been a peripatetic one. After succeeding celebrated winemaker Helen Turley at Peter Michael Winery, where for nine years he produced magnificent Chardonnays and ethereally beautiful Bordeaux-style reds, he later replaced his former mentor as winemaker at Colgin Cellars. He also reinforced his reputation as one of Napa Valley’s top talents with his consulting work for such esteemed labels as Bryant Family, Futo Wines, and Sloan, but he has since become better known for the stylish Chardonnay and Pinot Noir he produces from vineyards in Sonoma than for these blockbuster red blends from Napa Valley. Not that there is anything delicate about the Aubert 2009 Pinot Noir UV-SL Vineyard Sonoma Coast (www.aubertwines.com, $80), a powerfully constructed red wine that balances its ripe, fragrant, and intense cherry and red-plum fruit with the earthiness of cocoa, mushrooms, and clay.

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