Our wines spend 18-22 months in mostly neutral barrels with no added yeasts or enzymes, and minimal SO2 during aging. We believe this aids in a more complete polymerization of phenolic compounds and allows some of the forward fruit character in the young wines to decrease, allowing more land and season specific characteristics to emerge. We hope to keep the wines taut, long living, and original to their provenance. Unless noted, these wines are neither fined nor filtered.
Regarding the 2015 growing season, the spring and summer began much like where the 2014 growing season left off: warm, and finally, hot. We began our season approximately three weeks earlier than average and on par with 2014. We saw back-to-back weeks during the summer above 80° degrees with plenty of time above 90°, and a handful of days clocked above 100° . With all of this you would think we would be discussing a vintage where Pinot Noir would see more plum, black fruit character, and chardonnay would be more cloying with less detail. August, a typically very important month for our growing season as it falls usually 4-8 weeks before harvest, was cooler and a bit wet. The vines receiving a drink from the sky really helped temper the summer heat. With a cooler finish to the season, the detail and character were left unharmed in our fruit showcasing not only a vintage signature but vineyard characteristics as well.
2015 | Chardonnay
This is a blend of three barrels we felt best captured the Molly's Vineyard Chardonnay in 2015. Fermentation took place slowly without inoculations and the wine was raised for 20 months in barrel before bottling.
Wet stone, lemon curd, tangerine and coconut strike the primary notes while sweet floral notes (gardinia, frangipani) build and build. As usual with this site, a sense of minerality plays a major role from aroma to palate providing a sense of elegance to the power of 2015. With air, the notes turn more savory. On the palate, the wine is lithe yet loaded with intensity. There is a fruit flesh component I find, likely given the warmer vintage 2015 was, with a burst of crackling acidity running down the middle holding things together. The finish is savory, bright, and with lots of energy in reserve.
$39.00/bottle, 25 cases
2015 | Chardonnay
As with our Molly’s Vineyard Chardonnay, this is a blend of three barrels most representative of Johan Chardonnay from 2015. Our fermentation is the same, no inoculations, and 20 months in barrel.
If we describe the Molly’s Chardonnay as bright and savory, the Johan shows more in richness and reticence. Initial aromas of golden delicious apple, asian pear, coconut, and apricot are complemented with notes of saline, butter cream, and ginger. With time, honey, fig and notes of spice emerge. On the palate, lots of lemon, pineapple, and apricot. The richness has a lightness to it and the finish is cream and lemon.
$39.00/bottle, 25 cases
2015 | Pinot Noir
NORTHERN WILLAMETTE VALLEY
This is a blend of the following vineyards in approximately 15% new French oak:
- Stormy Morning 45%
- Johan 35%
- Molly's 20%
As with our single vineyard designated wines, the Willamette Valley Pinot Noir is raised for 22 months in barrel without racking or inoculations. We feel bottling this lot any earlier than the single vineyard wines would not allow for some of the more elegant, and detailed aspects to have a chance to develop and concentrate, and so all of the Pinot Noir is bottled at the same time nearly two years following the harvest.
Salt, sage, blood orange, cherries, pomelo, dry spices, and hibiscus. The background aromas are all umami; soy, and mushroom. On the palate, loads of resinous red fruits, and spice with savory notes bringing up the rear. It’s bright and sinewy, with plenty of mid palate density and chew. Lingering notes aren’t sweet; they are rather savory and loaded with earth and minerality. This bottling shows the weight of the vintage while maintaining a beautiful poise.
$24.00/bottle, 325 cases
2015 | SYRAH
This is a six barrel blend of 100% Steelhead Run Vineyard Syrah from 2015.
Immediate aromas of blackberries, black olives, sweet violets, bitter chocolate, and espresso are noted. With air, ground coffee, pepper spice, citrus and hints of iron present in the background. On the palate, this wine is savory, bright, and from the get-go, delicious. Time will allow more nuances to emerge, though in it’s youth, the wine can be enjoyed for its primary characteristics.
$27.00/bottle, 145 cases
2014 | Syrah
Steelhead Run VINEYARD
This is our reserve bottling of Syrah from Steelhead Run in 2014. We chose three barrels that we felt best represented the vineyard and vintage, as well as the ones that were built to go the distance. This syrah was produced with no added yeast, and bottled following 22 months in a mix of neutral 500L puncheons, and both 300L and 228L barrels.
Powerful aromas of raspberries, all spice, niçoise olives, licorice, quinine, dark chocolate, and cranberries. With air, notes of peppercorns, soy, cherry, rose, espresso, and grapefruit. The aromatics are delicate, yet packed in, offering layers upon layers of flavor that will shift and change with cellar time or decanting. On the palate, bright, dense notes of fresh cranberry, all spice, rose and oolong are tightly wound together at the moment. With air, the flavors spread out a bit offering black pepper, raspberry and violets. The finish is youthful, with compact tannins that will soften well with time in a cool cellar or to a lesser effect now with a slow decant.
$40/bottle, 75 cases
2016 | rosé
This Rosé consists of 100% Molly’s Vineyard Pinot Noir that was fermented in older puncheons and 228L barrels. Our Pinot Noir grapes destined for Rosé are picked when they are fresh yet ripe, and are then pressed whole cluster to barrel immediately after picking. The juice then ferments slowly in barrel with no added yeast and the resulting wine is left undisturbed to concentrate before bottling in May, 2017.
Initial Aromas of dried apricot, Satsuma orange, rose petals, salt, cherries, and crushed rock. With time, further notes of pomelo, peach, and sweet spring flowers are revealed. On the palate, a sense of minerality is complemented with notes of stone fruit and cream which are presented in a vibrant, savory and supple display.
$22/bottle, 125 cases
2014 | Red Wine
We grew slightly in 2014, yielding us more barrels to make our blends from. It’s important for us to allow the single vineyard wines to tell their story, and it’s just as important that our Northern Willamette Valley Pinot Noir and Oregon Syrah blends are an assembly of our barrels most suited for one another in these important bottlings. Some years we have barrels which may lend a profile too powerful to the mix; for instance, too much chocolate or tobacco which can overpower the other myriad of flavors in our Syrah, or too much cherry in the Pinot Noir which can overshadow the more delicate notes of rose petals. So we decided to take a few of these more pronounced parts and make a unique bottling, one with lots of charm and flavor, without going the route of varietal designation. So, with our first offering of this blend, here are the parts:
- 2 barrels of Pinot Noir
- 2 barrels of Syrah
- 1 barrel of Rosé
Aging took place for 22 months in all neutral barrels. Given that the Rosé did not complete ML fermentation, this wine was lightly filtered before bottling.
Aromas of deep red cherry, tobacco and sweet spices such as clove and anise. With time, notes of raspberries, hibiscus, dark chocolate and grapefruit emerge. On the palate, lots of juicy red fruit with plenty of dark, savory notes holding the tension together. With plenty of forward fruit appeal now, there is lots of structure to keep this wine motoring along for some time.
$20.00/bottle, 179 cases
2015 | PINOT NOIR
This is a blend of three barrels exclusively from Johan Vineyards in 2015. We chose these barrels not for richness, new oak or flash, but rather on the premise that we see the character of Johan being upheld in the resulting wine.
At first, intense aromas of dark red fruits and spice fill the air. With time, notes of dark cherry, salt, cream, cinnamon, and hibiscus become clearer. The aromatics show a nice density. On the palate, we see a similar mid-weight profile with lots of silk, brightness, and savory notes. As the wine opens up further, notes of spearmint, oolong, earth and raspberry emerge. As with the Stormy Morning, the 2015 Johan is transparent and poised, if a bit more burly and savory at the moment.
$39.00/bottle, 75 cases
2015 | PINOT NOIR
This is a blend of three barrels exclusively from Stormy Morning in 2015. We chose these barrels not for richness, new oak or flash, but rather on the premise that we see the character of Stormy Morning being upheld in the resulting wine.
Initial aromas of blood orange, rooibos tea, rose, and tar. Notes of raspberry, cinnamon, mushroom and cherry are present in the background. On the palate, the wine feels lithe and refined. A seamless sense of acidity is present throughout, holding the lines together ensuring a finish with lots of poise. Time and air yield more notes to include pomegranate, lemon, pine and rhubarb. Our 2015 Stormy Morning Pinot Noir shows a rich yet placid, and transparent character.
$39.00/bottle, 75 cases