2014 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
"93 Points: Outstanding; a wine of superior character and style
Broad, expressive and light-footed, this brims with cherry, plum, licorice and cashew flavors that keep singing on the focused finish. Drink now through 2024.”
- Wine Spectator Magazine
WINEMAKER TASTING NOTE
The 2014 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir opens up with luxurious layers of blackberry and raspberry jam, underscored by rich tannins. Beneath the bright expression of fruit lies sophisticated notes of fresh loamy soil, black tea, dried cherries and the sweetness of fresh herbs. Although rich and expressive on the palate, the wine’s structural elements provide lovely tension throughout, drawing the wine to an elegant and nuanced conclusion. If consumed within the next few years, the wine will benefit from a gentle decanting one or two hours before serving. Serving Temperature: 18°C/64.4°F
2014 SEASON & VINIFICATION REPORT
What makes 2014 such an exciting Oregon vintage? The climate was perfect: warm and sunny heading into harvest, our fruit developing no shortage of sweetness, color and tannin. Without the typical threat of fall rain in the forecast, winemakers were given a luxuriously roomy window in which to pick the fruit at optimal ripeness and with rich flavor development.
In the best vineyards, the complexity of flavors was apparent right on the sorting table. Nicolas-Jay worked closely with vineyard managers and growers to ensure picking each and every vineyard block at the most ideal time. Our decisions were guided first and foremost by flavor development, which led us to make balanced wines that are expressively true to the vintage.
Our first pick took place on September 15th at our own Bishop Creek vineyard from 25-year-old, own-rooted, dry farmed 777 clone pinot noir vines. Our last pick was on September 28th, just after a long awaited offering of precipitation, marking the end of an exciting and busy few weeks of harvest.
We harvested our fruit in small, 1/8th-ton cherry bins in order to guarantee that the grapes remained pristine. These bins allowed us to layer only a few clusters on top of one another, ensuring whole, ripe berries would make it safely to the winery for destemming. Then, we gently and carefully sorted each lot, making certain nothing below our standards made it into the small fermentation vats. We nurtured long, native fermentations over an average of 21 days per lot, encouraging suppleness and complexity by gentle aeration and extraction through pump-overs and constant sensory analysis. We delicately pressed at low pressures so as not to harden the mouthfeel, but rather to celebrate the purity of fruit and the silky tannins our fermentation style achieved.
- 100% Pinot Noir
- Harvested September 15th – September 28th, 2014
- Harvest Brix 24
- Alcohol 13.5%
- TA 5.6 G/L
- PH 3.63
- 7-Day Cold Soak
- Slow, Native Fermentation
- Gentle Pump-Overs Twice Daily
- Pressed Gently and Barreled Down After 24 Hours of Settling
- 15 Months Élevage
- 33% New French Oak
- Bottled December 2014, Unfined and Unfiltered
- 1,691 Cases Produced
- Released April 2016
- Winemakers: Jean-Nicolas Méo and Tracy Kendall