Wine Advocate 91 points - From a steep block on the eastern side of this famous vineyard complemented by some old vines on a broad upper terrace; dominated by Pommard Selection; and his only wine of the vintage to reach 13% alcohol (and then just barely), Vlossak’s 2010 Pinot Noir Shea Vineyard smells of dark cherry, purple plum and holly berry, all shadowed by their penetrating, spirituous counterparts and tinged with mace. With considerable richness and textural polish, this comes off as softer and sweeter at mid-palate than I anticipated from the nose; but bitterness of cherry pit and holly berry serves for a real sense of back-end invigoration, and a combination of saliva-liberating salinity and sheer sappy cling helps guarantee the desire to take the next sip. Giving what he considered the four best barrels from this vineyard 16 months before bottling, Vlossak rendered a Shea Special Selection - “my favorite wine of the vintage,” he called it, and the only such selection this vintage - that was sold to mailing list customers en primieur and expected to be released late; but he didn’t offer to show it to me in June. (Aug 2012)
Wine Spectator 93 points - Light in color, with a beguiling transparency to the look and flavor profile, offering cinnamon-accented raspberry and creme brulee flavors that remain silky and refined as they linger. Drink now through 2018.—H.S. (Nov 28 2012)
St. Innocent Winery was founded in 1988 by Mark Vlossak, the current winemaker and president. Mark’s interest and education in wine began early – his father was a wine importer and he was fortunate to taste wine on a daily basis. As an amateur, he produced sparkling wine in 1985-87 and apprenticed with Fred Arterberry, Jr. at Arterberry, Ltd from 1987-1988 and was the winemaker for Panther Creek Cellars from 1994-1999. St. Innocent produces small-lot, handmade wines that are meant for food. St. Innocent has an interest in the Zenith Vineyard (formerly O’Connor Vineyard) in the Eola-Amity Hills where they now have 16 acres of Pinot Noir planted. The winery also works closely with 8 different growers, leasing specific blocks of vineyards to produce terroir-specific wines. A new winery at the Zenith Vineyard was completed in time to receive the 2007 vintage harvest. This 17,500 sq. ft., four story, gravity facility features underground barrel rooms, a temperature controlled crush floor, and a 900 sq. ft. tasting room.