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Tag Archives for " California "

When in drought: the California farmers who dont water their crops

Dry farming forgoes modern irrigation and, farmers say, produces much tastier crops. In a drought-stricken state, should others follow suit? Theres something different about Will Bucklins grape vines. At first its hard to notice, but a drive through northern Californias Sonoma Valley, past waves of green, manicured vineyards, makes it clear. The black ribbon of […]

California, Oregon and Washington wines shine at Go West Tasting

At yesterday’s Go West! annual tasting California, Oregon and Washington wines emphasised that wines from west coast of the USA are gaining traction in the UK market. Over 300 wines were poured on site and exhibitors across the board seemed pleased at the venue becoming increasingly crowded over the course of the day. The success […]

You May Not Be Drinking The Famous Stag’s Leap Wine You Think You’re Drinking

Stag’s Leap – the winery whose name has an apostrophe before the S – is the famous Napa winery known for producing the Cabernet that bested the top Bordeaux at the 1976 Judgement of Paris. Thanks to this event, both Napa and the winery became famous internationally, becoming high-end names that many people the world […]

Château Bastor-Lamontagne Sauternes

A consistently fine, small to medium-sized operation which has performed admirably over a long period, providing the essence of Sauternes at an affordable price. As well as Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc, Michel Garat has just a small amount of Muscadelle to add aroma. The wine is barrel-fermented for an extended 3–4 weeks with around 15% […]

Château d’Angludet Margaux

Well-established Cru Bourgeois with 30 year-old vineyards planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot, which comes from the oldest parcel of vines and adds extra character. The emphasis at the property is to achieve a natural balance in the vineyard and this shows through in the quality of the wine which is medium-weight with […]

Château d’Agassac Haut-Médoc

Things are taking a turn for better at this medium-sized operation based in the southern part of the Haut-Médoc and owned by the insurance company Groupama. The wine is now showing good depth and some attractive dark fruit notes and harmonious tannins. A medium-weight style, better with 5 or 6 years’ ageing. The rating applies […]

Vidon Vineyard Willamette Valley

This is a recently established small operation, producing Pinot Noir red as well as Tempranillo and Pinot Gris. The first vintage was in 2003 and the Pinot Noir is now labelled 3 Clones. As ever with small volume winemaking keeping a track of your favourite wines is not easy. Production of all the wines is […]

Stoller Vineyards Dundee Hills

This is the sister property of Harry Peterson-Nedry’s CHEHALEM. The Stollers are co-owners there and the same applies here. One of the key differences between the two operations being that the wines here are produced from estate fruit whereas at Chehalem a range of examples from a number of sources are created. Vineyard plantation work […]

Stangeland Vineyards Eola-Amity Hills

The vineyards at this estate are to be found just to the north of Salem and gain the maximum light exposure from the sun, picking up its benefit from early morning. The property, located on a hilltop with a south facing aspect, was originally planted in 1978 to a combination of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and […]

St Innocent Wine Willamette Valley

Mark Vlossak established his small operation in 1988 with a number of other investors producing just a few hundred cases in his first vintage. Today the output remains relatively small and he makes some of the most striking wines in the AVA, with two-thirds accounted for by Pinot Noir. A big and structured Pinot Gris […]

Andrew Rich Wines Willamette Valley

Andrew Rich established his operation a little over a decade ago and produces wines from both Oregon and Washington sources. As well as Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and Gewürztraminer a range of Rhône varieties including Grenache, Mourvèdre and Roussanne as well as Syrah contribute to his small range. Sauvignon Blanc has been produced from the […]

Rex Hill Winery Chehalem Mountains

The four partners at A to Z Wineworks purchased this operation in 2007. With 23 ha (56 acres) of owned vineyards (Estate and Jacob-Hart) planted almost exclusively to Pinot Noir and Chardonnay and sourcing fruit from elsewhere this winery has consistently produced first-class wines and in particular, Pinot Noir from a number of sites. There […]

Raptor Ridge Winery Willamette Valley

The Schulls produce a small and impressive range of single-vineyard Pinot Noirs from a range of sources as well as one of the best value Willamette bottlings to be found in the State. They founded their winery in 1995 and have since planted a 7.5 ha (18 acre) site, which is farmed organically in the […]

Ponzi Vineyards Chehalem Mountains

Ponzi is a long-established Willamette Valley producer with a deservedly high reputation for its Pinot Noir. Luisa Ponzi has now taken on the winemaking mantle. Regular Willamette Pinot Noir is certainly good in a ripe, gamey and earthy style. There is a superior Reserve bottling, which offers more depth and greater structure as well as […]

Penner-Ash Wine Cellars Willamette Valley

Ron and Lynn Penner-Ash produce some rich and concentrated Willamette Valley Pinot Noir as well as small quantities of hand-crafted Syrah and Viognier. The Syrah comes from several different Oregon growers, while the Viognier is sourced from the Del Rio Vineyard in the south of the state. The Pinot Noir, a blend from a number […]

Panther Creek Winery Willamette Valley

This is an excellent producer of first-class Pinot Noir as well as Pinot Gris. The winery purchases fruit from a range of different vineyard sources throughout the Willamette Valley and, with long-term arrangements with growers, maintains a tight grip on viticulture. Careful sorting (triage) takes place prior to vinification and the practice of minimal intervention […]

Montinore Estate Willamette Valley

Rudy Marchesi is putting considerable investment into this sizeable operation since purchasing the winery in January 2006. The latest white vintages are already very promising and the Pinot Noirs consistently improving. The property consists of more than 84 ha (210 acres) of vineyards and is now farmed biodynamically. Of the two premium labeled Pinot Noirs […]

Maysara Winery McMinnville

The Momtazis are as well known for the quality of fruit emerging from their biodynamically farmed home estate vineyard as they are for their fine wines. They purchased their vineyard in 1997 and initially began farming organically before deciding biodynamic preparations were the best way forward – in order to produce fruit of the highest […]

Lemelson Vineyards Willamette Valley

This new Willamette operation was established in 1999 with the completion of its winery facility. A small and impressive range of well priced Pinot Noirs are produced along with a good Chardonnay, dominated by melon and lightly mineral, spicy flavours rather than others which can be excessively tropical and oaky. Riesling and Pinot Gris are […]

King Estate Winery Willamette Valley

This is now a sizeable operation and the largest producer of Pinot Noir in Oregon. Quality ranges from good to very good and the wines are widely sourced throughout the state. The wines produced include the flagship Domaine and also well-priced Signature labels including a fine luscious icewine style Vin Glacé from estate grown Pinot […]

Hamacher Wines Yamhill-Carlton District

Eric Hamacher makes a small amount of both Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and founded his winery operation in 1995. The wines are all sold to consumers through the Carlton Winemakers Studio of which he was one of the founders. As well as providing a tasting room it is a winery facility for a small number […]

Patricia Green Cellars Ribbon Ridge

Impressive property established by former Torii Mor winemakers Patty Green and Jim Anderson. The focal point of the operation is the 21 ha (52 acre) Estate Vineyard in Ribbon Ridge, which the pair purchased in 2000. As well as the Estate bottling wines have been made from a range of other vineyards too. These include […]

Four Graces Winery Dundee Hills

Steve and Paula Black purchased their 110 acre (44.5 ha) vineyard in 2003 and named it in honour of their four daughters. They have not ignored their son Nicholas though, he is recognized as the “keeper of the Four Graces” on their reserve label Pinot. Indeed it is no surprise that Pinot Noir is the […]

Elk Cove Vineyards Chehalem Mountains

A long established winery founded in 1974. They have 120 acres of vineyards planted on three northern Willamette sites. South facing slopes and a combination of finely drained Willakenzie and Laurelwood soils provides an excellent growing environment. The winery is now gravity flow and the wines are achieving new levels of quality. Pinot Blanc is […]

Coeur de Terre Vineyard Willamette Valley

The Neals established their property in 1998. Their vineyard is planted to Pinot Noir as well as Syrah, a small amount of Viognier to co-ferment with the Syrah in future releases, Rieslng and unusually for Oregon, Gruner Veltliner. Pinot Noir is the main focus though understandably and there are a number of different blocks with […]

Chehalem Vineyards Willamette Valley

Winemaking at Chehalem commenced in 1990. The winery is also now co-owned by Bill and Cathy Stoller of STOLLER VINEYARDS and Harry Peterson-Nedry is a part owner in their winery. There are now three estate vineyard sources, Ridgecrest, Stoller and Corral Creek, the total area under vine being some 106 ha (262 acres). Pinot Noir […]

Carabella Vineyard Chehalem Mountains

Mike and Cara Hallocks wines are all sourced from the family’s own vineyards. Their site is found in the south-eastern tip of the Chehalem Mountains on Parrett Mountain. The approach as with other contemporary Oregon Pinot Noir growers is to plant blocks of different clones separately. The 58 acre site now consists of seven different […]

Argyle Winery Dundee Hills

Now a part of the Australian Lion Company group, which owns PETALUMA, this sizeable operation produces good Pinot Noir as well as top-quality sparkling wine. For both Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, the bigger-volume Willamette Valley and Reserve bottlings offer good value; limited releases under the Nuthouse label offers a notch up in quality. The Nuthouse […]

Anne Amie Vineyards Yamhill-Carlton District

A sizeable range of wines is available at this property with vineyards in the Yamhill-Carlton and Chehalem Mountain regions. The estate was purchased by Robert Pamplin in 1999 and much investment has gone into the project with now close to 45 ha under vine. There are three essential ranges of wines. The Cuvée A labels […]

Archery Summit Winery Dundee Hills

Small, bespoke operation owned by the Andrus family, who founded the large premium PINE RIDGE operation in Napa’s Stags Leap District. Very classy Pinot Noir is produced here along with Pinot Gris. The focus is on specially selected lots of Pinot Noir, providing not only style and class but individuality too. To that end over […]

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