Joseph Phelps Vineyards

Quarter Moon Vineyard Pinot Noir

9.1135 ratings
9.125 pro ratings
Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California, USA
Pinot Noir
Top Notes For
David T

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

8.9

For me, the Joseph Phelps Pinots have improved over the last 5 years. The 2011 vintage overall in Sonoma/Napa is far from my favorite. The growning season was simply not that good (too cool) and Joseph Phelps was still finding their way with their Pinots. This drinks easy and smooth but, nothing about it really stands out on the palate.

On the nose, sweet, dark cherries, strawberries, cherries, black cherries, touch of blackberries and wafting blueberry notes. Light vanilla & cinnamon, black cherry cola. dark, rich sweet soil, hint of smoke/savory meat, limestone, dry crushed rock powder, black tea and dark fresh & withering flowers.

The body is medium edging toward full. It’s round, ripe and lush. It’s a good time to open your 11 JP Pinots and drink up. Their 11 Pinots aren’t waning but, not going to improve. The mid palate also leans a bit. Sweet, dark cherries, strawberries, cherries, black cherries, touch of blackberries, pomegranate,, dry cranberries and wafting blueberry notes. Light vanilla & cinnamon, light medium intensity dark spice, black cherry cola. dark, rich sweet soil, hint of smoke/savory meat, limestone, dry crushed rock powder, black tea and dark fresh & withering flowers. The acidity is beautiful due to the cool climate. The finish is good, balanced, smooth, dances with elegance but doesn’t dazzle. Finishes a little short.

Photos of; their Sonoma Pinot vineyard, Sonoma Visitor Center which, is now closed and a couple shots of their Rutherford tasting room.

Each year since 12, the quality of their Pinots has inched up in quality and are more cellar worthy.

For me, the Joseph Phelps Pinots have improved over the last 5 years. The 2011 vintage overall in Sonoma/Napa is far from my favorite. The growning season was simply not that good (too cool) and Joseph Phelps was still finding their way with their Pinots. This drinks easy and smooth but, nothing about it really stands out on the palate.

On the nose, sweet, dark cherries, strawberries, cherries, black cherries, touch of blackberries and wafting blueberry notes. Light vanilla & cinnamon, black cherry cola. dark, rich sweet soil, hint of smoke/savory meat, limestone, dry crushed rock powder, black tea and dark fresh & withering flowers.

The body is medium edging toward full. It’s round, ripe and lush. It’s a good time to open your 11 JP Pinots and drink up. Their 11 Pinots aren’t waning but, not going to improve. The mid palate also leans a bit. Sweet, dark cherries, strawberries, cherries, black cherries, touch of blackberries, pomegranate,, dry cranberries and wafting blueberry notes. Light vanilla & cinnamon, light medium intensity dark spice, black cherry cola. dark, rich sweet soil, hint of smoke/savory meat, limestone, dry crushed rock powder, black tea and dark fresh & withering flowers. The acidity is beautiful due to the cool climate. The finish is good, balanced, smooth, dances with elegance but doesn’t dazzle. Finishes a little short.

Photos of; their Sonoma Pinot vineyard, Sonoma Visitor Center which, is now closed and a couple shots of their Rutherford tasting room.

Each year since 12, the quality of their Pinots has inched up in quality and are more cellar worthy.

Sep 3rd, 2018
David T

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

9.0

The 08 Quarter Moon out of Magnum.

If you didn’t think the Phelps Pinot’s will age, they will. While they started slow in quality with their Pinot’s, their last three bottles have been very good.

On the nose; muted dark cherries, cherries, strawberries cranberries, pomegranate with hues of blue fruit. Vanilla, wood shavings, limestone and fresh & withering red florals.

The body is lean to medium. Still shows some tannins. Ripe elegant fruits of; dark cherries, cherries, strawberries dry cranberries, pomegranate with hues of blue fruit. Vanilla, wood shavings, gritty yet powdery limestone minerals and fresh & withering red florals. Very nice round acidity and well balanced but short finish.

The 08 Quarter Moon out of Magnum.

If you didn’t think the Phelps Pinot’s will age, they will. While they started slow in quality with their Pinot’s, their last three bottles have been very good.

On the nose; muted dark cherries, cherries, strawberries cranberries, pomegranate with hues of blue fruit. Vanilla, wood shavings, limestone and fresh & withering red florals.

The body is lean to medium. Still shows some tannins. Ripe elegant fruits of; dark cherries, cherries, strawberries dry cranberries, pomegranate with hues of blue fruit. Vanilla, wood shavings, gritty yet powdery limestone minerals and fresh & withering red florals. Very nice round acidity and well balanced but short finish.

May 19th, 2018
David T

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

9.2

On the nose, Asian spices, touch of light pepper, dark cherries, strawberries, cranberries, heavily exacted pomegranate. The fruits are slightly candied and gummy. Soft chalkiness and baking spices of; cinnamon, clove & nutmeg. Deep dark spices on the palate. Pink peppercorns, strawberries, cherries, dark cherries, dry cranberries and pomegranate, soft/light; cinnamon, clove & nutmeg, crushed dry rock powder, soft minerals, loamy soils and a touch of leather. The Quarter Moon was showing more freshness, was richer, fuller body and softer acidity than the Pastorale. Further, the QM had a more consistent polished finish that lasted over a minute. Photos of the barrel display in the back of their main room, terrace area and sloping wines as you drive up to their estate.

On the nose, Asian spices, touch of light pepper, dark cherries, strawberries, cranberries, heavily exacted pomegranate. The fruits are slightly candied and gummy. Soft chalkiness and baking spices of; cinnamon, clove & nutmeg. Deep dark spices on the palate. Pink peppercorns, strawberries, cherries, dark cherries, dry cranberries and pomegranate, soft/light; cinnamon, clove & nutmeg, crushed dry rock powder, soft minerals, loamy soils and a touch of leather. The Quarter Moon was showing more freshness, was richer, fuller body and softer acidity than the Pastorale. Further, the QM had a more consistent polished finish that lasted over a minute. Photos of the barrel display in the back of their main room, terrace area and sloping wines as you drive up to their estate.

May 9th, 2017
Michael Gallegos

Sales & Hospitality Red Car Winery

8.7

This is a sleepy Pinot here in Jan of 2017. Needs way more time, very tight. Has potential but totally outclassed by all of the other Phelps wines.

This is a sleepy Pinot here in Jan of 2017. Needs way more time, very tight. Has potential but totally outclassed by all of the other Phelps wines.

Jan 13th, 2017
Ross Cobb

Owner/Winemaker Cobb Wines, Winemaker Hirsch Vineyards, Claypool Cellars, Banshee Wines

9.3

Great job Justin!

Great job Justin!

Aug 5th, 2016
David T

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

9.0

Fruits are bright. Strawberries, cherries, pomegranate, cranberry ocean spray. Light earth and chalkiness.

Fruits are bright. Strawberries, cherries, pomegranate, cranberry ocean spray. Light earth and chalkiness.

May 8th, 2016
Kevin Walsh

Wine blogger doxologywine.com; Freelance Sommelier (Court of Master Sommeliers) Doxology Wine Consulting

9.0

Depth, with balance. Cranberry mixed with cherry and a denseness to it that caries through.

Depth, with balance. Cranberry mixed with cherry and a denseness to it that caries through.

Sep 5th, 2015
Mitzi Inglis

Marketing/Public Relations, Joseph Phelps Vineyards

9.4

Love this wine. 2012 vintage. #josephphelps biased review.

Love this wine. 2012 vintage. #josephphelps biased review.

Aug 2nd, 2015
David T

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

9.2

Syrupy strawberries, cherries, pomegranate, licorice, cola, vanilla toast. Smoother and more approachable at this stage vs. the Sonoma.

Syrupy strawberries, cherries, pomegranate, licorice, cola, vanilla toast. Smoother and more approachable at this stage vs. the Sonoma.

Jun 13th, 2015
Mitzi Inglis

Marketing/Public Relations, Joseph Phelps Vineyards

9.1

Continuing the celebration of life. Thank you Joe Phelps. - biased review. 2009 vintage. #josephphelps

Continuing the celebration of life. Thank you Joe Phelps. - biased review. 2009 vintage. #josephphelps

May 14th, 2015