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2017 Release

 


The capacity of this wine to absorb and integrate the new barrels into the fruit flavor and structure of the wine is one of the aspects of this wine that makes it stand out in a certain way beyond our other wines. Wines need depth of flavor and structure to take the 100% new barrel regimen even when the barrels are of the nature that we use which, in general, are a lighter touch than many other cooperages. Still, the spice and structural component in the barrel will be found in the wine, especially at a younger age. In 2017 the wines are rich, aromatically complex and intense, densely fruited but with a deftness brought about by balancing acids and incredibly fine-grained tannins. This is a perfect environment to find barrels that honor the character and quality this bottling has historically delivered while being a touch more approachable in its youth than in some other vintages. Five different sites contribute at least a barrel to the mix and in a fairly democratic fashion with no site contributing more than two barrels. This wine is intended to show the exotic places Pinot Noir can go to and still be immediately identifiable as Pinot Noir. The stable of vineyards we work with is unmatched in the state of Oregon and we select only the barrels that instantly say Notorious to us in our tastings.  The oak is present but deft and will eventually drop to the background and serve only as a framing element. This wine is built to be great, comes from the best of the best sources and delivers every single vintage. To date the oldest versions of this bottling (2000 and 2001) are still drinking very well and are surprisingly youthful. Yes, this is an esoteric wine in the sense of how it is made, how it differs from all our other wines and that it is frequently our top wine of any given vintage despite being a blend rather than from a single vineyard. That is a bit of the fun of this bottling to go along with the pure deliciousness of the wine.

 

1 bottle made

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AVA: Chehalem Mountains    LOCATION: Kings Grade Rd.

ELEVATION: 375’       SOIL TYPE: Willakenzie

YEAR PLANTED: 1991     CLONAL MATERIAL: 100% Wadensvil

VINEYARD SIZE: 32-acre vineyard, ~2.7-acre PGC Wadensvil block   VINIFICATION: 2 open-top 1.5 ton fermenters. One fermenter containing 100% de-stemmed fruit, the other containing 60% whole cluster fruit.

PICKING DATE: October 5th     TONS/ACRE: 2.0

OWNER: John & Susan Olenik      PRODUCTION: 288 cases bottled              

Winemaking and Notes:  The combination of marine sedimentary soil and Wadensvil creates a nearly 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 ten barrels that make up this wine come equally from a fermentation that was done with 60% whole clusters and from a fermenter that was 100% de-stemmed. 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 60% 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 with a velvet-like texture. We’ve been using this combination for this particular bottling for the past couple of vintages in some form or another. The whole clusters give an incredible backbone to the wine that lends an austerity 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. This wine is incredibly aromatic and floral but still allows for the back palate to be the guiding force. This is a sneaky, subtle wine that will playfully hint at grandiosity.  *WINE CLUB ONLY

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