2008 Pinot noir | Reserve
In the Vineyard
It is never known for certain what the weather will bring to any given vintage, and 2008 was no exception. A cool spring delayed bud break by at least three weeks, which made for an anxious growing season. Fortunately, a sunny dry summer followed with heat units adding up rapidly. The vintage culminated in an unusually long, dry October with nights in the mid 30s and sunny daytime temps in the 70s to low 80s. The result was clean, healthy, ripe and balanced fruit throughout the valley. The clusters hung on the vines until they reached perfect physiological ripeness with low potential alcohols. The ‘picking window’ offered optimal harvesting conditions which stretched all the way to our last and latest vineyard pick on record thus far – October 29. The fruit sourced for our 2008 Reserve Pinot Noir comes from vineyards in the Chehalem Mountains, Yamhill-Carlton and McMinnville AVAs.
At the Winery
The hand-picked whole cluster fruit from each vineyard was harvested at an ideal 23-24 Brix and trucked to our winery where it was sorted and destemmed into fermenters. The destemmed fruit or ‘must’ underwent about a five day cold soak then was heated to between 70-74ºF and inoculated with select strains of commercial yeast including BM45, 71B, and RC212. Fermentations lasted about two weeks and total skin contact was around 18-20 days. The barrels selected for the reserve blend were primarily from the Stony Mountain and Hawks View lots, followed by Meredith Mitchell, Bellevue Cross, Yamhill Springs, Arbre Verte and Gran Moraine, and finally a touch of our own estate vineyard fruit. The final blend was aged for 11 months in 40% new oak barrels, 30% one-year-old barrels, and 15% two-year-old barrels with the remaining 15% neutral barrels.
At the Table
The 2008 Reserve is pleasing to the eye, with saturated crimson and bright purple hues. Brooding aromas of mocha and smoky vanillin of oak mix with ripe blackberry and blueberry fruit. The palate is structured round and full, revealing rich plum and spice cake flavors cloaked in silky yet meaty tannins.