EWG Tastes Oregon Wines - April 21, 2013

Roy's Pasadena

Tasted April 21, 2013 by jasonh with 459 views


I'm not sure if anyone was converted to Oregon wines on this night but I think a few people were pleasantly surprised, especially with the Chardonnays which I am happy with. Oregon Chardonnay is underrated and under exposed. Particularly when considering the last 10 vintages. As for the Pinots, I enjoyed the wines and have more belief in them than most at the table. A slightly unfortunate fact was that the wines with a little age were from average vintages while the young wines were from 3 top end vintages that are in need of time and probably not showing their best.

Flight 1 (3 notes)

2010 Matello Chardonnay Richard's Cuvee USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Ribbon Ridge
Great to taste this wine again. In a very good place but probably should rest a little longer. Marcus has reduced the amount of oak this sees in the future but I thought this handled the oak just fine. Giving it a richness but not making it hedonistic. Probably dig out my last bottle in 2 or 3 years.
2010 St. Innocent Chardonnay Dijon Clone Freedom Hill Vineyard USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
This was more disjointed than the other chardonnays. I believe this was decanted for 60 minutes. Zero new oak on this. A base of white fruits. The acidity hits pretty hard. Needs time.
2011 Domaine Drouhin Oregon Chardonnay Arthur USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Dundee Hills
A unique Oregon chardonnay. Recently I have had a chance to taste a number of the Drouhin Chardonnays and I think this is the best. I noticed a tasty key lime pie element. Should age well. Early signs for me are that 2011 Oregon Chardonnays are going to be very good.

Flight 2 (4 notes)

2000 The Eyrie Vineyards Pinot Noir "Marguerite" USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
Sadly this bottle was either off are just dying. I still enjoyed it for its aged qualities but it was far more advanced than the previous bottle I tasted and was showing some VA.
2000 St. Innocent Pinot Noir Seven Springs Vineyard USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
Wow! Could easily pass for a 2010. In fact when we first tasted it, I was talking to Robert Thornton and he thought it was the 2010 he brought. If you don't like the 7 Springs profile then run away because this is a prime example (I believe this was before the split). Earthy and brawny. Big presence of tannins but I think the freshness of the wine can handle them. Good time to drink. Since I only have one bottle left, I'm going to go ahead and let it rest for another 5-7 years. WOTN
2004 Domaine Serene Pinot Noir Evenstad Reserve USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
We did this Oregon tasting to honor Bob Wood although many of the wines would probably not be found in his cellar and I know this one wouldn't. IIRC I have never tasted a DS and frankly have never desired to. But this was fine wine. Very tasty. Big and round. I haven't had any other 04s in recent times so I am not sure where to place it. Creamy and oaky. Texturally similar to a restrained cali pinot but the fruit and acid were less aggressive. An easy wine to like.
2007 Scott Paul Cellars Pinot Noir Audrey USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Dundee Hills
What a beauty. 100% Maresh vineyard which has to be one of my favorite sites. Typical of an 07 it is not going reach out and grab your attention. Nuanced and subtle with fairly big acid. I bought these on futures IIRC or at least a nice discount. A great purchase and I look forward to my next bottle. I don't know if I am going to let my 07 age too long but I might let one of these bottles go for the long haul. Be a good test of the screw cap too.

Flight 3 (5 notes)

2008 Antica Terra Pinot Noir USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
Excellent wine. I was worried it would be locked down like some of the other 08s I have had recently but this was showing well. I like the profile. Nice mix of fruit earth and spice. I would have liked to taste this the next day.
2010 Domaine Drouhin Oregon Pinot Noir USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
A nice wine. Showing fairly simple but possibly a bit shut down right now. I stopped buying DDO a long time ago. Good wines but I just rarely find character in them.
2010 St. Innocent Pinot Noir Freedom Hill Vineyard USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
Over the years I have started to enjoy the Freedom Hill Vineyard. In the past I just found them too backwards and a bit dull. But it seems with vine age and learning the vineyard more, FH is not producing top notch wines. Dark, brawny and spicy. This needs to just be left alone for 5-8 years. Probably not for everyone.
2011 Vincent Pinot Noir Armstrong Vineyard USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley, Ribbon Ridge
Getting to the end of the night this bright young pinot was able to cut through with its red fruited acidity. Drinking well now if you want something more intense but I would prefer to let everything settle in to place. Such a lovely vintage and this wine showcases it well.
2008 Loring Wine Company Pinot Noir Shea Vineyard USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley
Peter popped this at the end of the night. I like Brian's wines but for me this was out of sorts on this night. I found it on the shrill side with a fair amount of heat as well. Might just be in a bad place. I have had a few 08s that are not working right now.
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