The Hedonistic Taster: Oregon Wines

Image: ©Andrea Johnson, courtesy Chehalem Mountains AVA "Magic on the Mountains."

The Hedonistic Taster

The Oregon Wine Edition

by L.M. Archer

 

Are you going?

I’m headed to Willamette Valley to cover the 1st Annual Chehalem Mountains AVA  “Magic on the Mountains” Wine Tasting Event on Saturday, June 8, 2019 from 12 – 4 p at the Chef’s GardenAllison Inn & Spa in Newberg, Oregon.

Image: ©Andrea Johnson, courtesy Chehalem Mountains AVA "Magic on the Mountains."

Chehalem Mountains AVA, Willamette Valley, OR.

(Link here for more info.)

Hope to see you there…in the meantime, let me help you whet your whistle with a recap in of my favorite pours from Oregon Wine Month in this issue of The Hedonistic Taster.

These family-owned Oregon wines all share a focus on small-lot production, single vineyard and estate sourced fruit, and sustainable farming.

Enjoy!

Disclaimer: No compensation is received; all opinions expressed are that of the author.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Alloro Estate Chardonnay – Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2016

Alcohol:  13.5%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 37 / 250 cases produced.

Robe:  Pale gold robe. 

Nose: Asian pear, golden apple, green gage plum aromas.

Bouche: Ripe yellow fruit bouche – notes of Bosc pear, golden apple, and meyer lemon, with no discernable oak. Light–to-medium body, discrete acids; solid structure, balance, finish.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Alloro Estate Pinot Noir – Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2015

Alcohol: 14.1%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 40 / 1600 cases produced.

Robe:  Clear ruby robe.

Nose: Cherry, cherry cola and red raspberry aromas.

Bouche:  A stunningly affordable, high quality Willamette Valley cuvée that checks all the right boxes: solid structure, balance, and finesse.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Alloro “Riservata’ Estate Pinot Noir – Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2015

Alcohol: 14.3%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 50 / 300 cases produced.

Robe: Ruby-slipper robe.

Nose: Heady aromas of red currant, black cherry, cherry tobacco.

Bouche:  Flawless. Blueberry coulis, dark red currant and morello cherry bouche; graceful structure, refined tannins, poised finish. Reminiscent of a Savigny Premier Cru.

More about Alloro Vineyard here.

Knudsen Vineyards, Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, OR.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine: Knudsen Vineyard Chardonnay – Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2017

Alcohol: 13.5%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $  45

Robe: Light gold robe.

Nose: Aromas of white flowers, baking spices, tropical notes.

Bouche:  Ripe golden apple, Bartlett pear, lemon curd, toasty notes. For those who prefer medium-bodied yet well-balanced chardonnays with a touch of oak.

More about Knudsen Vineyards here.

Lenné Estate, Yamhill-Carlton, Willamette Valley, OR.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Lenné Chardonnay –  Yamhill-Carlton, Willamette Valley,

Vintage:   2017

Alcohol: 13.6%

Producer Specs: 50% new oak; aged 9 mos. on fine lees.

Suggested Retail: $  $45 / 153 cases produced.

Robe: Clear pale straw robe.

Nose: Exotic aromas of lychee, fuji apple and starfruit.

Bouche:  Gooseberry, golden apple, lemon on the bouche; no perceivable oak on the nose or palate; light body, medium acids, pristine finish. While it has the broad, bright fruit sans oak reminiscent of a Mâconnais blanc, it has a plusher mouthfeel similar to whites from the Côte Chalonnaise. Excellent old-world-style wine at a new-world price.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Lenné South Slope Select Pinot Noir – Yamhill – Carlton, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2016

Alcohol: 13.9%

Producer Specs: 44% new oak; aged 11 mos. prior to bottling.

Suggested Retail: $  55/ 200 cases produced.

Robe:  Deep cherry robe.

Nose:  Aromas of smokey pipe tobacco and dark cherry, with a mocha back note.

Bouche:  Potpourri of dark red cherry, blue plum, pine, and leather. Light body, lively on the palate, elegant finish.  Don’t forget your smoking jacket and velvet monogrammed slippers when sipping this one.

More about Lenné Estate here. 

Open Claim Vineyards, Willamette Valley, OR.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Open Claim Vineyards Chardonnay – Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2016

Alcohol: 13.5%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 75 / 80 cases produced. Winemaker: Tony Rynders.

Robe: Pale straw robe.

Nose: An exhilarating filagree of sea breeze, Queen’s Anne lace, and Asian Pear.

Bouche:  Brilliant. A chalky, chiseled, citrus implosion upon the palate that leaves one begging for more. Uh, did I mention brilliant?

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Open Claim Vineyards Pinot Noir – Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2015

Alcohol: 14.1%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $  75/ 60 cases produced. Winemaker: Tony Rynders.

Robe:  Deep ruby robe.

Nose: Reductive, black fruit, cracked black pepper aromas.

Bouche:  Wild raspberry, spice, earth notes on the bouche. Light body, masterful balance, discrete finish. Lots of complexity, sip after sip. Impeccable artistry in a glass.

More about Open Claim Vineyards here.

Troon Vineyard, Applegate Valley, OR. TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Troon Vineyard Côtes du Kubli

Vintage:   2018

Alcohol:  13.5%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 35

Robe: Pale straw robe.

Nose: Stone fruit, lacey white flowers, toasty aromas.

Bouche: Glints of saline sparkle through this ethereal white and yellow fruited pour; light body, medium acid, wispy finish.

More about Troon Vineyard here.

Youngberg Hill, Willamette Valley, OR.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Youngberg Hill Cuvée Pinot Noir – McMinnville, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2016

Alcohol: 14.4%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 35/ 496 cases produced.

Robe: Clear ruby robe.

Nose: Sound dark red and blue fruit, earth, bramble notes.

Bouche:  Wow! Talk about a great bang for your buck. Solid structure, well-executed balance between acids and tannins, and a dulcet finish. Fantastic quality-to-value ratio.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Youngberg Hill J-Block Pinot Noir – McMinnville, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2016

Alcohol: 14.1%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 60/ 620 cases produced.

Robe: Multi-faceted ruby robe.

Nose: Intoxicating aromas of sous bois, pine, red currant. NOTE: You’ll want to use a proper pinot noir glass when enjoying this wine to ensure you don’t miss a note.

Bouche:  Bit of a trickster. Fleshy red apple, fresh red raspberry, bouche, black tea back note. Light body,  beautiful structure and balance, with an unexpected raspy, Tom Waits-like damn-I-think-I-need-a-cigarette-because-it-was-just-that-good finish.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Youngberg Hill Natasha Pinot Noir – McMinnville, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2016

Alcohol: 14.3%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 60 / 859 cases produced.

Robe: Dark ruby robe.

Nose: Compote of dark blue fruit on the nose –  plum, blueberry, bramble berry.

Bouche:  Heart of Darkness. If Joseph Conrad got lost in McMinnville instead of the Congo, he’d ponder the human condition with this light-bodied yet plush, plummy, blue and black fruited brooder. Solid.

TASTING NOTES:

Wine:  Youngberg Hill Bailey Pinot Noir – McMinnville, Willamette Valley

Vintage:   2016

Alcohol: 14.1%

 Producer Specs: Dijon 777,  36 % new French oak, aged 14 mos.

Suggested Retail: $ 75 / 197 cases produced.

Robe:  Pellucid ruby robe.

Nose: Lovely duet of red and blue fruit on the nose, primarily red currant and blueberry, respectively.

Bouche:  A pitch-perfect red currant opener with a cola grace note on the bouche. Light body, exquisite structure, balance; harmonious finish.

More about Youngberg Hill here.

More Hedonistic Taster here.

 

Have a favorite Oregon wine? Feel free to leave your comments below!

Copyrighted LM Archer LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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