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2018 Release

We are pleased to introduce our 2018 vintage Pinot Noirs! Whese wines are deep, concentrated and full of life. They show impressive levels of acidity and tannin which will only serve to brighten the wines, elongate the finishes and make for incredibly compelling wines in the years to come. Over the years we have strived to make the best possible Pinot Noirs, when undeniably Oregon Pinot Noir is at a level only a few wines and wine regions can ever aspire to reach. We have over 600 barrels of Pinot Noir and some are at truly rare heights even at this stage of development. This is a terrific time to be an Oregon producer and consumer of the most exciting, captivating and delicious red and white varieties in the world. - Jim Anderson, Winemaker

 

Winemaking and Notes: The 2018 Wadensvil is both rich with bright fruit combined with structure and density, but also showing finesse. It is all from 100% whole cluster fermentations.  This wine has stood out as one of the top wines in the cellar since ferments really started taking shape this spring. A wine where the red-fruited nature of the clone gives it a different flavor profile than all the other wines, but the clone’s natural transparency allows for the inherent structure of the vineyard to be portrayed. This is a paradoxical wine in ways, but incredibly interesting. The 2018 vintage is much like the 2017 vintage, but with greater fruit concentration that balances the omnipresent tannins. While this is serious in structure and clearly a wine that will benefit from time there is such an appealing level of fruit and texture that drinking it in its relative youth is far from a bad idea. This is a showstopper in many ways and few domestic Pinot Noirs reach this level of overall intensity in all the relevant categories. Act according to your nature.

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SKU: 18FHW

*92 Points ~ Wine Enthiusiast 

 

AVA: McMinnville                                      

LOCATION: Vineyard Ln.

ELEVATION: 650’                                     

SOIL TYPE: Jory

YEAR PLANTED: 1989

CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Coury          

VINEYARD SIZE: 135-acre vineyard, 1.4-acre PGC block

VINIFICATION: One 1.75-ton open-top fermenter done 100% destemmed and one 2.5 ton done 33% whole cluster.

PICKING DATE: 10/02/18                         

TONS/ACRE: 2.95

OWNERS: Laurent Montalieu                  

PRODUCTION: 258 cases bottled

Winemaking and Notes:We received enough fruit in 2018 to do one regular 1.75ton fermenter and one 2.5 ton fermenter. The 2.5 ton included a third of its volume as whole clusters. As in 2017 we went to slightly greater lengths to coax out a level of extraction from this vineyard so these fermenters were regularly pigeaged 2x/day as opposed to 1x/day for nearly everything else. It seemed a good choice in 2017 and since this is just our second vintage with this site we chose to repeat the process. We feel that the older vines combined with the clonal material and vine age could accept a more rigorous extraction process. The wine spent about 12 months in barrel in 25% new oak.

This wine’s stature comes from the combination of site characteristics and clone that are extremely rare in Oregon. The way they present themselves set them apart from all of our other wines. We strive to find unique places so that we can craft a large number of wines that are all very distinct. In this case we have found a block within a large site that offers us the ability to have a wine that feints at both being lean, austere, demure and tightly wound as well as being rich, broad-shouldered, structured, dense and provocative. At least in its youth that is the vibe it is giving off and the type of elasticity that it has. Few wines bring such an ability to move from both sides of the spectrum effortlessly with intent.

 

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$75.00
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SKU: 18HC

*92 Points ~ Wine Enthiusiast 

 

AVA: Dundee Hills                                               

LOCATION: Worden Hill Rd.

ELEVATION: 425’                                                  

SOIL TYPE: Jory

YEAR PLANTED: 1990                                         

CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Pommard

VINEYARD SIZE: PGC block 3.5 acres, .8 acres and .5 acres spread across three sections of the vineyard.

TONS/ACRE: 3.25                                                  

PICKING DATE: September 24

VINIFICATION: Multiple fermentation vessels and whole cluster inclusions ranging from 0 to 100%.

Winemaking and Notes: 8 of the 15 barrels come from 100% whole cluster fermentations and 7 come from completely destemmed fermenters. Most of the wine comes from the large block located in the ideal location on the bowl-shaped hillside, but 3 barrels came from the block above that seemed to add a dimension of elegance and texture without taking away from the lavishness, deep fruited and structured wine we all know. This combination allows the structure and earthen minerality to be infused with the incredibly lush and dense fruit this vineyard produces creating a wine of great depth, character, complexity and flavor. 15% new barrel was used with a combination of once to four times used barrels to round out the barrel program. This wine wants to be perfect. It is youthful and jumpy right now. As of writing this, there is so much material rolling around with fruit and tannin. Its characteristics are sort of all over the place. Not unusual for great wines to begin at stages like this. This has power, concentration, dry extract, subtle spice undertones and enormous length. This is not necessarily a powerhouse, but it has so much to it that it’s impossible to doubt that there is profundity in this wine’s future. Taste it now for all the incredible stuff going on, but get it because it will be great years down the road.

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SKU: 18Y

*91 Points ~ Wine Enthiusiast 

 

AVA: Chehalem Mountains                          

LOCATION: Kings Grade Rd.

ELEVATION: 325’                                          

SOIL TYPE: Willakenzie

YEAR PLANTED: 2007

CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Pommard        

VINEYARD SIZE: 32-acre vineyard, ~1.0-acre PGC Anklebreaker (Pommard) block

VINIFICATION: 2 open-top fermenters, a 1.75 ton and a 2.5 ton, the former with 40% whole clusters the latter with 60% whole clusters.

PICKING DATE: September 22nd               

TONS/ACRE: 3.33

OWNER: John & Susan Olenik                   

PRODUCTION: 156 cases bottled

Winemaking and Notes:This is a lower lying section in Olenik Vineyard planted to Pommard clone in 2007 and the name references the rock-strewn nature of this section of the vineyard. This is definitely the warmest spot of the site with the radiant heat from the rocks. This section was picked early on in the 2018 harvest at a moderate level of brix belying this wine’s deep, dark color and powerful overall nature. We are very pleased to be able to showcase the characteristics of this utterly unique piece of ground in Oregon. The Anklebreaker moniker is a visual description of the ground this part of the vineyard is planted in. The basalt boulders, rocks and stones in the section of the vineyard are part of a long ago land slide from further up the embankment and they give the block a visual similarity to vineyards in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Somehow, the name seems to also convey the style of wine to expect and it delivers. This is a broad-shouldered Pinot Noir with deep and very dark fruit flavors. It is years away from any sort of peak, but certainly provides satisfaction at the big-boy level in the short run. Of all the wines in this very diverse cellar this is the most about the place that fruit comes from style of Pinot Noir. It was born to plants in a difficult and hard environment and the wine is not easy and maybe not for everybody but it is distinct, interesting and a great connection to the soils.

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SKU: 18OA

This bottling allows us to accomplish two things that are very important to us as a winery. The first thing is that it allows us to be incredibly detailed about the barrels we select for our vineyard designated wines, so they true expressions of the site on a year in and year out basis. The Willamette Valley Pinot Noir bottling “Reserve” is almost entirely made up of barrels that simply were not included in a more prestigious bottling, which allows us to choose from larger sections of our diverse vineyards. Secondly, it allows us to create a blended wine that has a degree of consistency to it each vintage that is of incredibly high-quality and will retail for under $30.

In short, this wine is a smoking deal! The 2017 Willamette Valley Reserve was rated as the #39 wine by The Wine Spectator and 93pts because of its unusual combination of quality, price and availability.

This bottling comes from terrific sources. The 2019 has a make-up of unique pedigree for a wine at its pricing. Slightly over 33% comes from our Estate Vineyard from which we bottled 4 individual single vineyard/block bottlings in 2019. Other sources of significance are Freedom Hill Vineyard which is one of the most famous (and deservedly so) sites in the state, Corrine (formerly Olenik) Vineyard which we have bottled single vineyard Pinots from since 2009, Wind Ridge Vineyard which is an older Ribbon Ridge AVA site, Anderson Family Vineyard which is new to us but is a 30 year-old organically farmed site in the Dundee Hills (and we are making a vineyard designated Pinot from it in 2019) and a vineyard so famous that the winery that owns it won’t let us put the name of the vineyard on the vineyard designated bottling of it that we do let alone tell you it is one of the mainstays in our least expensive wine! You get the picture. This isn’t throw away stuff mixed together and then hope for the best. This is an intentional wine filled with basically declassified single vineyard quality wine in it.

This wine carries the breadth of the winery in other ways as well. From completely destemmed grapes to 100% whole cluster fermentations, all winemaking stylistic decisions are represented within this bottling. The two most important AVAs in the Willamette Valley to us (and likely the two most prestigious and sought after) are Ribbon Ridge (where we are located) and the Dundee Hills. 75% of this wine comes from those two AVAs. To show those in their pure fruit form about 75% of the volume of this wine comes from neutral barrels while less than 3% of are new barrels.

Production: 4,145 cases bottled.

 

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SKU: 19R

 

Winemaking and Notes:There was a range of whole cluster fermentations ranging from 45% to 100% stem-inclusion that were created from the fruit we received from this block in 2018. They allwent through a normal cold soak of 4 to 5 days and then were fermented in 1.75-ton open-top fermenters (as well as one 2.5 ton round that was done 100% whole cluster and is the bedrock of this bottling) and pigeaged 1x/day until dry and then was pressed and allowed to settle for 3 days before being pressed separately to allow for specific blending later in the year. The wine spent about 11 months in barrel in 27% new oak. 13 barrels of the 100% whole cluster fermentation barrels were selected with 7 coming from the 2.5 ton fermentation and 5 from 45% whole cluster fermentations. This combination allows for the forward, supple nature of Dundee Hills fruit to be showcased while held in check by the old vine, mineral-driven elements of the 100% whole cluster barrels. There is sweet red fruit that is overlaid by a distinctly savory aspect creating a dichotomy upon which complexity exists. This is a wine that has old bones and sensibilities to it while still having the stuffing that Dundee Hill wines are known for all while being an insanely rare example due to the vine age that helps define this wine’s boundaries.

These now monster vines were planted back in 1973 making them some of the oldest vines in Oregon, thus giving this bottling an historical aspect to it. 46-year-old vines in Oregon are exceptionally rare both because there was so little planted acreage back then and some of that acreage has been re-planted due to Phylloxera. The fact that this site and wine exist at all is somewhat of a minor miracle. In part due to this, this wine knows exactly what it wants to be. It shows finesse, subtleness, elegance and discreet balance all backed up by a sneaky and looming firmness. Only older vines make wines like this. This is not a wine that needs to make a dramatic entrance, because all the work is done on the back end.

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SKU: 18DBM

 

Wine Making and Notes:This bottling has always been a powerful view of this vineyard site and we still have blocks in the vineyard in the 10-21 year-old range that have not made (will not make?) the change to the far more chic and mineral-driven Estate Old Vine style. That is fine. Our Estate Vineyard is fairly large and incredibly diverse, so having two very different wines coming off of it is great. To us, this is the exciting part of Pinot Noir and vineyard management, and the marriage of the two in winemaking.

The wine is dark in color, dense in earth-tinged dark fruits with relatively thick tannins. However, as the vineyard has aged, fewer blocks are still producing this style of wine that seems to be indicative of the young vines. This comes from just three blocks: a 1998 southeast-facing planting of Pommard, a 2000 south-southeast facing planting of Pommard at lower elevation and, for the first time ever, a 2000 planting of Pommard that faces east at the top and back of the vineyard. This section has finally developed into something beautiful and representative of this site and particular bottling and we are very excited about its inclusion in this wine! The lower block of Pommard by the winery was done with 50% stem inclusion while all the fruit from the other two blocks were done as 100% de-stemmed. Everything went through a standard cold soak of about 4-7 days depending on the block, fermented in 1.75-ton open-top fermenters and was pigeaged 1x/day before being pressed and allowed to settle for 3 days. This spent a little less than a year in barrel with only 3% being new barrels while 86% were neutral so there is minimal oak influence in this wine allowing the pure nature of this dark Ribbon Ridge bottling to really come out. We dry farm our vineyard and these younger vines, even at 19-21 years of vine age, are still under a bit of duress. This leads to small, tight clusters and fairly thick skins. This gives the wine its trademark dark, almost purplish color with a hefty and dense structure. This can be a bit savage in nature when youthful but it comes around surprisingly fast and, of course, is good for many years.

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SKU: 18ESTVM
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$175.00
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SKU: 18ESTFVM

 

Winemaking and Notes: We have long believed that Wadensvil planted in marine sedimentary soil produces some of the best wines in the cellar. The only problem is finding it outside of our vineyard. Wadensvil is a little later ripening, a little lighter, and a little more elegant and was generally shunned from the late 80’s into the mid-2000s by independent vineyards. When Wadensvil is given the right conditions and especially when combined with the mineral effect of marine soil it blossoms into a stunningly beautiful wine.   The 2018 continues the upward trajectory that this bottling has been on since we started it four vintages ago. The fermentations from this northwest facing section of the block were done with 33% whole clusters while the fermentations from the northeast facing aspect ranged from completely destemmed to 33% to 66% whole cluster. They were assembled as the final wine with 4 barrels from the northwest section, 7 barrels from the whole cluster barrels on the northeast and 3 from the destemmed portion. The wine was pressed off and allowed to settle for 3 days before going to barrel. The wine, while being 22% new oak is also 50% neutral barrel. The Wadensvil clone presents itself in a lovely red-fruited manner (while still being quite concentrated and rich) from our vineyard that tends toward darker fruit profiles. There are very fine-grained tannins and terrific acidity so this wine may take some time to come around and it will undoubtedly have a long life in front of it.

 

 

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$130.00
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SKU: 18ESTWM

AVA: Willamette Valley       LOCATION: Burnell Rd.

ELEVATION: 500’                SOIL TYPE: Bellpine

YEAR PLANTED: 2001        CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Pommard

VINEYARD SIZE: Vineyard is 85 acres/PGC Blocks total 14 acres

TONS/ACRE: 2.65                 VINIFICATION: 2 x 1.75 ton fermenters with 100% destemmed fruote and 43% whole cluster fermentions.

PICKING DATE: 9/30/18

OWNERS: Dan & Helen Dusschee      

Winemaking and Notes: This is where our bread is buttered. There is no denying that we work with Pommard clone far more than any other clone and that there is something to Pommard that makes it not only stand out but has the capacity to stand on its own as a complete wine more often than any other clone we work with. Within the non-Freedom Hill Vineyard futures offerings all of them are either Pommard or contain Pommard with the exception of the two specifically chosen Wadensvil clone bottlings. Of the three clone-designated wines we bottle from the site this one seems capture what may be the historical view of Freedom Hill Vineyard. This section of the vineyard was re-planted in 2001. This is a dark, dark wine with a rich, plush mid-palate (even at this early stage) that is layered with muscle. Over the past couple of vintages we have experimented with whole cluster usage on this block and the results are extremely appealing. There is still an Old World nature at the heart of this wine even though it pulsates with its Oregon heritage and sensibilities. This shows savory tones mixed with wild, brambly fruits on the nose. Drinks at a high-pitched level with bright, crunchy red fruits, earth-born characteristics and a distinct spicy note on the finish.

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SKU: 18FHPM

AVA: McMinnville    LOCATION: Vineyard Ln. off Muddy River Rd.

ELEVATION: 650’    SOIL TYPE: Jory

YEAR PLANTED: 1989      CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Coury Clone

VINEYARD SIZE: 135-acre vineyard, 1.4-acre PGC block    VINIFICATION:  1 x 2.5-ton fermenter done with 33% whole cluster and 1 x 1.75 ton fermenter 100% destemmed.

PICKING DATE: 10/02/18       TONS/ACRE: 2.95

OWNERS: Laurent Monthelieu    

Winemaking and Notes: In 2017 we basically lucked into fruit from a 30 year-old block from this historic Oregon vintage that a couple of other wineries decided they could not make big enough wines from to suit their tastes and needs. We were happy to swoop in and land some incredibly well farmed Coury Clone vines from an incredibly unique vineyard. Our block of Coury Clone was planted in 1989. Coury Clone is a rare and unique clone of Pinot Noir brought to America from Alsace (via California) in the 1960s by Charles Coury and ultimately initially propagated at Hyland Vineyard. We have had tremendous&

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$175.00
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SKU: 18HCM

AVA: Chehalem Mountains                         LOCATION: Bell Rd. north of Newberg  

ELEVATION: 500-900’                                  SOIL TYPE: Willakenzie

YEAR PLANTED: 1976, 1980

CLONES: 50% Pommard, 50% Dijon 777           

VINEYARD SIZE: 25-acre vineyard, ~1-acre PGC Pinot Noir blocks

VINIFICATION: 2 open-top .75. ton fermenters done 100% de-stemmed and pressed together.

PICKING DATE: September 29th                TONS/ACRE: 2.76

OWNER: Hal Medici                                     PRODUCTION: 12 Bottles

Wine Making and Notes:This is one of the more historically revered and heralded vineyards in Oregon. Originally planted in 1976 on a steep hillside above Bell Rd. this vineyard was daring for its pitch, elevation and for the fact that it was well outside of the Dundee Hills where the vast majority of quality vineyards were being planted at the time. Even though this is in what is now known as the Chehalem Mountain AVA it is at an elevation that makes it comparable to the Dundee Hill sites by the way of being planted in volcanic (Jory) soil. It is still, by any measure, a steep and grand vineyard that absolutely looks the part of what one would imagine a great vineyard might look like. Fortunately, it is more than looks.

 

We get small portions of the two blocks from the oldest section of the vineyard: the 1976 planting of Pommard and a 1980 planting of Chardonnay that was grafted to Dijon 777 sometime in the 90s.  We received enough fruit in 2018 to ferment the two blocks separately for the first time since 2015 but we chose to press them together as we knew from four previous vintages of experience that we were going to blend them together in both their entireties regardless. The wine was aged in 25% new barrel for about 10 months. In our short history with this majestic vineyard we have reaped amazing fruit and made wines that received enormous critical acclaim 93, 95, 96 but this vintage may outdo those others. This vineyard was taken over by J. Christopher Winery in 2015 which is why we even get the fruit that we do. The quality of the farming took an immediate turn for the better as it has been biodynamically farmed since that time. Agriculture being what it is though it has taken years for the plants to completely respond to the massive upgrade in their life experience. We are really seeing it both in the vineyard where these old vines look refreshed and are producing normal sized crop loads of beautiful looking clusters and in the winery where this wine has an effortless stateliness to it that is singular in our cellar. This is a rare and special wine from one of the great vineyards in the state.

 

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SKU: 18MM

AVA: Chehalem Mountains                          LOCATION: Kings Grade Rd.

ELEVATION: 325’                                          SOIL TYPE: Willakenzie

YEAR PLANTED: 2007

CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Pommard        VINEYARD SIZE: 32-acre vineyard, ~1.0-acre PGC Anklebreaker (Pommard) block

VINIFICATION: 2 open-top fermenters, a 1.75 ton and a 2.5 ton, the former with 40% whole clusters the latter with 60% whole clusters.

PICKING DATE: September 22nd               TONS/ACRE: 3.33

OWNER: John & Susan Olenik                   PRODUCTION: 12 Bottles

Winemaking and Notes:This is a lower lying section in Olenik Vineyard planted to Pommard clone in 2007 and the name references the rock-strewn nature of this section of the vineyard. This is definitely the warmest spot of the site with the radiant heat from the rocks. This section was picked early on in the 2018 harvest at a moderate level of brix belying this wine’s deep, dark color and powerful overall nature. We are very pleased to be able to showcase the characteristics of this utterly unique piece of ground in Oregon. The Anklebreaker moniker is a visual description of the ground this part of the vineyard is planted in. The basalt boulders, rocks and stones in the section of the vineyard are part of a long ago land slide from further up the embankment and they give the block a visual similarity to vineyards in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Somehow, the name seems to also convey the style of wine to expect and it delivers. This is a broad-shouldered Pinot Noir with deep and very dark fruit flavors. It is years away from any sort of peak, but certainly provides satisfaction at the big-boy level in the short run. Of all the wines in this very diverse cellar this is the most about the place that fruit comes from style of Pinot Noir. It was born to plants in a difficult and hard environment and the wine is not easy and maybe not for everybody but it is distinct, interesting and a great connection to the soils.

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$145.00
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SKU: 18OAM

AVA: Chehalem Mountains                   LOCATION: Kings Grade Rd.

ELEVATION: 325’                                     SOIL TYPE: Willakenzie

YEAR PLANTED: 2007                            CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Pommard

VINEYARD SIZE: 32-acre vineyard, ~2.7-acre PGC Wadensvil block

VINIFICATION: 3 open-top 1.75 ton fermenters, one with 0%, one with 40% and one 50% whole clusters.

PICKING DATE: September 26th         TONS/ACRE: 3.25

OWNERS: John & Susan Olenik         PRODUCTION: 12 Bottles   

Winemaking and Notes: Olenik Vineyard sits nearly smack dab in the middle of this south facing hillside. The vineyard sits on the same type of thin marine soil as our Estate Vineyard. Wadensvil Clone is especially perfect for this type of soil. The natures of marine sedimentary soil and the Wadensvil clone are nearly a perfect intersection for Pinot Noir in Oregon. Wadensvil tends toward more elegant, high-toned and red-fruited wines while the sedimentary soil adds an element of structure and turns the wine distinctly toward a very mineral-driven mid-palate and finish. The barrels that make up this wine come equally from the fermentations that was done with 50% and no whole clusters with a couple of barrels of the 40% whole cluster fermenter rounding out the balance. Despite the differences in the make-up of the fermentations the bins were both pigeaged 1x/day and pressed separately on the same day. The fruit that was fermented with 50% whole clusters emphasizes minerals, spices and back-palate structure all of which provide tension in the herb-laced red fruit. The de-stemmed barrels are a rush of sweet, feminine red fruit and a texture like velvet. The 40% seemed to have a little of both. The whole clusters give an incredible backbone to this wine that lends an austerity to this wine that benefits it not only down the road but in the here and now, allowing it to be the wine from the Chehalem Mountains that is the most elegant, graceful and refined of the bottlings. The wine is incredibly aromatic and floral but still allows for the back palate to be the guiding force in this wine. This wine is soulful and richer than it at first seems however it is graceful, subtle and sublime and easily one of the most popular wines that we make.

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SKU: 18OM
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