One of those events I’ve been wanting to attend for a few years, but there seemed to always be a conflict of schedule. This year, however, I made certain that we could go. And I’m very happy we did attend.
The event has been hosted for several years at Anne Amie Vineyards, just outside of Lafayette Oregon. A gorgeous location situated atop rolling hills of green. And to top off the location and the fantastic abundance of wine offerings . . . the sun was out and gave us respite from the seeming endless winter weather.
Attending this year were 39 wineries that represent the length and breadth of the Yamhill-Carlton AVA. Most wineries had 3 tastes to offer, some had only 2. I did my best to taste those that I had, as yet, not had opportunity to try. I successfully tasted 19 different wines ranging from crisp and tangy Sauvignon Blanc to some rich and deep Pinot Noir. All in all an enchanting experience. I highly recommend that this event find itself on your schedule next Spring. I’ll mark those (**) that I discovered that really impressed.
Ken Wright Cellars – A preeminent recipient of wine awards. I understand why.
2014 Chardonnay – Creamy texture, bright acidity and truly amazing. And I don’t care for Chardonnay
** 2014 Savoya Pinot Noir – Bright fresh fruit on the nose as well as on the palate. Very well balanced with a soft but long finish. A very nice choice.
2014 McCrone Pinot Noir – Good fruit on the nose, not as bright as the Savoya. Solid and well balanced, but a bit dry on the finish.
La Randonnee – A very small production winery.
2016 Sauvignon Blanc – Crisp and fruity, good solid texture. A very nice refresher.
NV Pinot Noir Rose’ – (I neglected to get the vintage) Bright nose, ample acid on the mid palate without going to long, mouth-watering, with a good balance
2014 Pinot Noir – Great nose. Very fruit forward. A 5-clone Pinot blend. Well balanced with great fruit.
2013 Pinot Noir – Earthy nose, mushroom and earth on the palate. Well balanced texture and a long finish. Classic cool vintage pinot.
Ghost Hill Cellars – One of those that I’ve been wanting to visit for quite some time.
2013 Bayliss-Bower Pinot Noir – Excellent nose, loads of fruit. On the palate it is a bit lighter, more subdued, but good fruit notes throughout.
2013 Pinot Blanc – Nice bright fruit, tart but solid mid palate with balanced acidity.
** 2015 The Spirit of Pinot Noir Rose’ – unmistakable strawberry on the nose, solid mid palate, very balanced. Great choice for a summer patio wine.
2015 Pike Road Pinot Noir – Made from fruit from 6 estate vineyards, this wine is the epitome of Cuvee’. A blend of some of the best fruit from some of the best vineyards around the AVA. Deep dark fruit and cola flavors. Great texture, smooth tannins and excellent finish. What I call a Solid Drinker.
** 2014 Pinot Noir Shea Vineyards – Made form 100% Wadenswil clone. A BIG, DARK plum and dark cherry front. The “biggest” pinot noir I think I’ve ever tasted. Almost Cab Sauv. Excellent balance. My oh my.
2014 Pinot Noir – Mild nose, not a lot there . . . The Mid is good, good balance. Solid finish
2015 Pinot Noir – A bit vegetal on the nose, brambly and mushroom, brighter mid though. Preferable for me. Also solid finish.
2014 Estate Pinot Blanc – Unusual nose, mixture of floral and citrus, Decent mid palate, through line of Lemon. Very nice.
2013 Pinot Noir – Good nose, dry mid, and very short. But, it is a cool vintage . . . so take that with a grain.
2013 Angela Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir – Mild but good fruit on nose, pepper through the mid and finishes dry.
**2013 Abbot’s Claim Vineyard Pinot Noir – My wife strongly approved of this one. Bright nose, very good fruit in the mid and a long smooth finish.
2011 Fischer Family Pinot Noir – Mild nose, fruity candy flavor in the mid, very smooth finish. Quality library wine.
2014 Fischer Family Pinot Noir – Good nose, Solid fruit in the mid, finish was short and abrupt.
2014 LENEZ Pinot Noir – Pommard and Clone 114 – Strong fruit on the nose, not so much on the mid. OK
2014 Kill Hill Pinot Noir – Great nose, loads of dark fruit on the nose and the palate. Solid balance thru the finish.
2014 Marshall Davis Vineyard Pinot Noir – Fruity nose, bright red fruit on the mid palate, a bit of pepper on the finish.
2014 Kalita Vineyard Pinot Noir – Good fruit on the nose, as well as in the mid but goes dry at the finish. No silk.
2014 Lazy River Pinot Noir – Similar profile to the first, but doesn’t go dry and has a nice long finish.
2014 Yamhill Carlton blend Pinot Noir – Great nose, very floral . .Solid mid palate. A bit high in alcohol
2014 Shea Vineyard Pinot Noir – Good nose, Similar profile to above, not nearly as much alcohol bite on the finish. . .better.
2014 Menefee Vineyard Pinot Noir – Floral nose and a bit vegetal on the mid. Good balance
2014 Lazy River Vineyard Pinot Noir – Fruity nose, good solid mid palate, good balance.
2016 Pinot Noir Rose’ – strong aroma of clover and wild flowers, floral flavors in the mid. refreshing. .
2013 Heritage Clones Pinot Noir – Good nose, dark fruit and quite smooth in the mid, medium finish, not silky but not harsh edged either.
2016 Child’s Play Pinot Noir Rose’ – Very typical PN Rose’ nothing terribly great or different.
2014 Extrovert Pinot Noir – Nice nose, good fruit and mid palate. . pretty standard
2014 Gamay Noir – Really good fruit on the nose, smooth mid, solid drinker. unlike a few other Gamays . .no weird vegetal flavors. Good all around.
** 2014 Kiana Pinot Noir – great nose, smooth mid, very fruit forward. Always a favorite.
2014 North Valley YC Pinot Noir – Very mild nose but a good mid palate.
2014 Mineral Springs Ranch Pinot Noir – Mild nose, good solid mid and a bit of pepper on the finish.
2012 Pinot Noir Kiff Vineyard – Great nose, solid fruit in mid and well-balanced.
2014 Pinot Noir Kiff Vineyard – Gret nose, a bit vegetal in the mid, good finish.
All in all a really great education in the producers and growers in the Yamhill Carlton AVA. And I did find a few that I may have to investigate further in the future.
A great way to start OREGON WINE MONTH. Go . . . Find your Adventure.