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Flashcards in Pinot Noir And Gamay Noir Deck (17):

Willamette Valley

Oregon’s most important grape is Pinot Noir,
cranberries’ and ‘earth’, nuanced, subtle, with high acidity that don’t always explode with lusty fruit.


There are three major influences on the taste of Oregon Pinot Noir:

1.Vintage Variation: Inclement weather in the spring and fall each year greatly affect the taste of that year’s wine.

Examples of warm vintages include: 2008, 2009, 2012 and 2013.
Cool vintages where wines are lighter and have higher acidity are: 2010 and 2011

2. Complexity and Body from Oak Aging: Certain winemakers focus on fancier oak programs with high quality French oak barrels and longer aging. In Oregon Pinot Noir, French oak adds cinnamon, clove and vanilla notes in the wine. Wines with less oak often get their body and tannin from grape skins and tend to be slightly more bitter. This is an important factor to pay attention to when searching for the style you like.

3. The Willamette Valley is a wide south-to-north oriented valley on the eastern side of the Coast Range of Oregon. The mountains act as a slight buffer to the ragingly cold Oregon coast but the valley still experiences some of the wettest conditions of any wine region.


The Willamette Valley sub-AVAs:

1. Chehalem Mountains -Cherry, Black Tea & Cinnamon
2. Ribbon Ridge - Cranberries & Dirt
3. Dundee Hills-Raspberry & Black Tea
4. Yamhill-Carlton -Black Cherries and Vanilla
5. McMinnville - Plum & Pine
6. Eola-Amity Hills-Plums, Currants and 5-spice

The Chehalem Mountains are the hills to the southwest of Portland. Some of the more bold Pinot Noir wines. Producers in Chehelam Mountains: J. Christopher, Raptor Ridge, Rex Hill, Sineann, Ponzi Vineyards, J. Albin

Ribbon Ridge is actually in the Chehalem Mountains but because it’s on the southern lip of the mountains that has a slightly different soil and weather type, it earned its own AVA. Ribbon Ridge is where you’ll find the intense cranberry flavors and rustic earthy notes that is recognized as Oregon Pinot Noir. Producers in Ribbon Ridge: Beaux Freres, Brick House, Patricia Green

Not only will you find excellent Pinot Noir, but there’s also Chardonnay and sparkling wines. Producers in Dundee Hills: Four Graces, Domaine Serene, Roco Winery, Archery Summit, White Rose, Eyrie Vineyards, Willful, Torii Mor

Yamhill-Carlton’s best vineyards are on the low rolling hills to the southwest of Ribbon Ridge. It stays hotter later in the afternoon in this area, so you’ll find fruit-forward black cherry flavors. Producers in Yamhill-Carlton: Big Table Farm, Shea Vineyards, Anne Amie Vineyards, Wilakenzie Estate, Penner Ash, Soter, Belle Pente

The south facing vineyards show promise of making some rich dark cherry and plum like flavored Pinot Noir. You’ll find the slope angle really makes a difference in the flavor of McMinnville wines. Some of the wines are very rustic with pine and herb notes.
Producers in McMinnville: NW Wine Company, Hyland Estates, Yamhill Valley Vineyards

This wine area spans along a low set of hills that lead south into the state capitol of Salem, Oregon. All of the best vineyards are on southeastern facing slopes that run along the 221 Highway. Producers in Eola-Amity Hills: Cristom, St. Innocent, Evesham Wood


2011 Scott Paul La Paulee:

grapes from four sights including in AVA regions of Dundee Hills, Ribbon Ridge and Chehalem Mountains. The Chehalem grapes are biodynamic. Cool Vintage. Wild Yeast, French Oak. Violets, Raspberries, Wild Strawberry on nose, black cherry on palate.


2011 Cristom “Sommers Reserve”:

87% Eola-Amity Hills
French and New Oak. Aromas: cherry-cola, red forest berries, forest floor, meaty Taste Impression: red-velvet, camphor, sweet spice, balanced, cool vintage


2013 Evesham Wood:

Warm Vintage. Delicate, floral. Aromas of cherry blossoms and spring flowers, sweet herbs. Pairing for soft cheeses, and potatoes gently roasted and garnished with fresh garden herbs. Salmon or pork with a sweet glaze. Unfiltered wines, and produces wines that mirror the subtle, terroir-driven style of the Côte d'Or.


2012 JK Carriere “Anderson Family”:

warm vintage, dark ruby color, mostly Dundee Hill, Wild Yeast, French Oak, orange peel, iron, smoke, brown sugar, deep red fruit


2013 JK Carriere Provocateur:

warm vintage. Yamhil, Dundee, Chahalem. Wild fermentation, stainless steel, maceration. Translucent medium garnet. Black cherry, green/white/black pepper, lively acidity.


Sonoma-Russian River Valley Pinot Noirs:

Pinot-perfect climate combined with an amazing complexity of soil types, results in wines that reflect their individual sites but share a common thread. Aromas tend to be bright, focused fruit, ranging from wild strawberries and raspberries to red and black cherries. Notes of cola and baking spices are common. In the mouth they are rich and velvety, with their high degree of ripeness, kept in check by bright acidity.


Freeman Keefer Ranch 2012

great year for Russian River Valley. Deep ruby color, ripe cherries, rhubarb, toasted oak, long finish with balance of acidity and tannin. French Oak.


Trentino Alto-Adige/Sudtirol (Sud-tee-rol):

Near Austrain Border in Italy
Blauburgunder/Spatburgunder- Pinot Noir in Austrian (Blaowbergunder)
Typical Alto Adige Pinot Noirs have a rich and intense scent of dark berries, spice, and violets.
Recommended pairings:
game, wild fowl, spring lamb, rabbit, aged cheeses


Klaus Lentsch Bachgart 2011-

full bodied, velvety, pomegranate red, cherries, spice, dry, full bodied, pairing with feathered friends, braised meats.


Franz Hass 2011-

marzipan, plum jam, cloves, cinnamon, cherry


Domaine Pierre Gelin Clos Naploleon 2011-

premier cru, Fixin (cotes de nuits) A bright carmine-red colour. Notes of undergrowth, flowers (violets) and spices (vanilla). Strength and minerality, balanced between freshness and sweetness.


Marechal Vielles Vignes 2011-

Savigny les beaunes (sav ven ee le boon) aoc in cote de beaune., old grapes, good structure, balanced tannins. Woody, spicy, fruity, plum, cherrystone, white tobacco and that Burgundian signature of minerality and good acidity.


Jean Foillard Cuvee Corcelette 2011-

Morgon AOC, granite and schists, rustic, spicy, mineral, deep, velvety, apricot and cherry


Terres-Dorees l’ancien-

family owned small estate, fruity and delicate, indigenous yeast, blueberry, fig