The 2018 Pinot Noir McDougall Ranch is another superb wine in this range. Unlike the other Pinots, though, the McDougall is going to need a few years in bottle to soften, as it is pretty forbidding today. Dark cherry, plum, spice, dried herbs, lavender menthol and licorice all flesh out with a bit of time in the glass. 2023-2033
Last of the Pinot Noirs, the 2018 Pinot Noir McDougall Ranch is one of the larger production cuvées (although these are all tiny releases) and comes from a vineyard on the Sonoma Coast. Violets, Bing cherry, strawberry, and raspberry notes as well as plenty of stem and spice emerge from the glass, and this medium-bodied, savory, complex Pinot Noir has building tannins, solid mid-palate depth, and a beautiful finish. It's possibly my favorite in the lineup and has a terrific sense of balance between its fruit, tannins, and acidity. It's going to benefit from 2-3 years of bottle age and keep for a decade. 2022-2032
Exposed vineyard planted in 1998, 3.5 miles (5.6 km) from the ocean on sandstone and shale at 1,010 feet (310 m) – so high above the fog line that it's the warmest of Kutch's vineyards. Made the same way as the blended Sonoma Coast bottling. 22 barrels produced. Intense, concentrated ripe black-cherry nose. Very clean and not quite ready with fine sandy tannins making their presence felt but I think it should become pretty delicious with food midway through 2020. Very precise, with the 100% whole-berry element in evidence. 2020-2026
The 2018 MacDougall Ranch bottling is the ripest wine in the Kutch portfolio in this vintage, as this warmer, above the fog line cuvée comes in at 13.5 percent octane. The wine offers up a lovely combination of purity and gentle sappiness in its bouquet of black cherries, sweet dark berries, stony soil tones, dark chocolate, woodsmoke, a bit of sweet stems and incipient notes of cola in the upper register. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, focused and will be velvety in texture in due course, with a sappy core of fruit, fine mineral drive, surprisingly firm tannins and a long, complex and very well balanced finish. This is structured and will demand some cellaring, but will be a fine drink when it has blossomed. It is one of the few pinots from Jamie Kutch that I can recall being a bit awkwardly adolescent out of the blocks, but all of the constituent components are here. 2028-2055+.