Raptor Ridge Estate (Tuscowallame) Vineyard
Raptor Ridge Estate’s Tuscowallame Vineyard is located in Oregon’s beautiful Chehalem Mountains about 25 miles southwest of Portland. The vineyard site slopes east-southeast with sweeping views of Mount Hood and Mount Adams—and on a very clear day, even Mount St. Helens and Mount Rainier. At about 500 feet in elevation, this gently sloping land is frequently visited by red tailed hawks, Peregrine falcons, barn owls, and great horned owls. Tuscowallame is an indigenous word meaning “place where the owls dwell.”
Purchased in 2000, the site was a defunct cherry orchard. A year was spent digging out over 2000 cherry trees, ripping and cross ripping the soils to remove ancient cherry roots. The vineyard was planted in three phases, and each block is named for the vineyard manager who planted it. Adalfo’s Block was planted in 2001 by Adalfo Jimenez and was a ‘test block’ with a field blend of 115, 667, and 777 clones of Pinot noir and 1.5 acres of Grüner Veltliner. Macario’s Block was planted by Macario Ramirez in 2004, and contains Pommard, 667, and 777 clones of Pinot noir. Dustin’s Block was planted in 2007 by Dustin Miller, and contains Pommard and 114 clones of Pinot noir. Elevations range from 250 to 498 feet on our Loess-based Laurelwood soils with Jory underlayment.
Our estate Pinot noir is noted for its silky texture, fine-grained tannins, Italian plum, cherry, black pepper and mineral notes. Tuscowallame Pinot noir may be found in many of our cuvees, such as Trig, Flight Club Select, Reserve, and Willamette Valley. Our first vintages from the estate were released as Adolfo’s Block 2006-2010. Since 2011, we have blended the now-mature Macario and Dustin blocks with Adolfo’s to achieve a 500+ case Estate bottling.
Raptor Ridge Estate’s Tuscowallame Vineyard is located in Oregon’s Chehalem Mountains about 25 miles southwest of Portland. The vineyard site slopes east-southeast. Tuscowallame is an indigenous word meaning “place where the owls dwell.”
The 2014 Estate Whole Cluster is sourced from Pinot Noir clone 114 from Blocks 10 and 11, and Pommard from Block 9, on our Estate (Tuscowallame) vineyard. The warmth of the vintage resulted in sufficiently lignified stems to allow Scott to craft this limited wine. The motivation behind partial whole-cluster fermentation is a wine marked by complex tannins, as well as intriguing spice on the nose and palate. Fully ripe pinot noir from younger estate vines reveals red and black berry fruit, with licorice and floral resonance. This wine will age beautifully, as the ripe tannins integrate over time!
The 2013 Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir reveals the subtleties of the vintage, and is defined by a haunting aromatic profile of raspberry, dried rose petal and orange peel. This wine is lifted and bright on the palate, coming through with defined notes of strawberry, raspberry, white pepper, and an acidity typical of the '13 vintage. Drink now or lay down through 2021.
9 Out of 10: Light garnet in the glass, this wine smells of raspberry leaf and dried flowers. In the mouth, stony, subtle flavors of raspberry, green herbs, and wet earth feel like they've been filtered through cold mountain stream water. Wonderfully delicate, with excellent acidity and surprisingly muscular tannins for being so faint in their presence. – Alder Yarrow, Vinography
This is a wine that is not coy or shy. The nose is outgoing with ripe cherry fruit, sweet pomegranate, and plum, with soft notes of clove cigar, and musk. The curvy palate is lush with red cherry, Italian plum, and Marionberries. Note the pleasing floral qualities of lavender, and brown spices like nutmeg, pepper, and chestnut. With astounding acidity, and polished tannins this wine will drink well through 2017. Enjoy with a wild mushroom risotto.
91 Points, Wine Spectator
91 Points, Wine and Spirits
91 Points, Vinous
"This forward, fruit driven Pinot finishes with excellent thrust and length, and supple, late-arriving tannins."--Vinous, Josh Reynolds
"...dark, bright and racy with black cherry and tangy acidty, earthy, fresh and complex." --Tasting Panel, Anthony Dias Blue
"It is full of lush, rich fruit flavors without being a jammy fruit bomb. It’s a very in-your-face wine without being obnoxious. There is nothing shy or quiet about it." --Augusta Chronicle, Dennis Sodomka
This beautiful expression of our Estate vineyard Pinot noir is a stunner on all fronts! In the glass, this wine is vibrant garnet with fantastic clarity. The nose greets you with red cranberry, red cherry, and crushed raspberry, with soft meaty notes of seasoned leather and ripe savory notes. On the palate, one is greeted by generous red fruits, wrapped up in a firm structure of tannin and crisp acidity. This wine will age well in your cellar, or enjoy now with rich buttery northwest salmon.
"Substantial mouth texture with subtle fruit that's mellow, warm and perfect to curl up with." --Durham Magazine
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