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Reviewed Wines from the current Newsletter
PinotFile 12/13

From DION Vineyard

2018 Dion Vineyard Chehalem Mountains Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., 304 cases, $32, screw cap. Released spring 2020 to wine club and fall to general public. Clones 115, 114, 667, 777 and Pommard, all from Dion Vineyard. Vines between 17 and 42 years of age. Harvest Brix 23.6º-24.5º. Aged 11 months in French oak barrels, 18% new. · Moderately light garnet color in the glass. Giving perfume upon opening with aromas of red cherry hard candy, red rose petal and a hint of spice. A very pleasing, forward-drinking wine offering middleweight flavors of red and black cherry supported by easygoing tannins and juicy acidity. Excellent harmony, with a compliment of oak in the background and some finishing length. A solid, well-priced, everyday Pinot. Score: 91. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Dion Vineyard 115 West Limited Release Chehalem Mountains Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 50 cases, $45. Released fall 2020 to wine club and to the general public pending. Clone 115 from the western-most block of Dion Vineyard. These grapes traditionally anchor the winery’s Winemaker’s Reserve. Harvest Brix 23.6º-24.5º. Vines were 18 years old. Aged 14 months in French oak barrels, 50% new. · Moderately light garnet color in the glass. Engaging aromas of dark cherry, cola, cardamom spice and a compliment of oak. The black cherry core saturates the palate yet the wine is lithe and streamlined. Added accents of baking spice and licorice provide interest. There is a subtle thread of oak in the background and a touch of tannin on the juicy, cherry-fueled finish. A complete single clone wine. Score: 93. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Dion Vineyard Winemaker’s Reserve Limited Release Chehalem Mountains Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 101 cases, $50. Released fall 2020 to wine club members and to the general public pending. A barrel selection from the best blocks that are most expressive of the vintage when combined. Clones 115, 114, 667 and 777 from Dion Vineyard. Age of vines was between 17 and 18 years. Aged 14 months in French oak barrels, 50% new. · Moderate garnet color in the glass. The nose is similar to the 115 West bottling featuring aromas of black cherry, sarsaparilla and spice. An exceptional wine upon opening in a mid-weight style, showing perfectlyripened black cherry fruit anointed with luscious spice. Suave and polished in the mouth, with submerged tannins and a notable finish filled with black cherry goodness. Score: 94. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Dion Vineyard Old Vines Reserve Release Chehalem Mountains Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., 92 cases, $65. 100% Pommard clone planted in 1976 on a 10-acre winery block. Selfrooted and non-irrigated. Harvest Brix 23.7º-24.1º. Aged 14 months in French oak barrels, 50% new. · Moderately dark garnet color in the glass. Intriguing aromas of darker berry and cherry, sweet pipe smoke, earthy flora and a subtle cloak of oak. Midweight plus in style with black cherry and black raspberry flavors with a rustic, gamy bent. Admirable harmony with a perfect fruit/ tannin ratio. This wine had me staring at the glass and asking, “How could so much flavor come from that wine?” The finish, like all great wines, lingered for what seemed like an eternity. When tasted the following day from a previously opened and recorked bottle, I summed up the experience as “Wow!” Decant or cellar five years to gain the full experience. Score: 96. WINERY » ARTICLE »


From Lenné Estate

2018 Lenné Estate Estate Yamhill-Carlton Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., pH 3.80, TA 0.59, 298 cases, $40. Released 9/1/20. Grapes 100% de-stemmed, 5-day cold soak before inoculation. Aged 11 months in French oak barrels, 33% new. The winery’s flagship bottling crafted from all five clones found in the Estate Vineyard with always at least 50% Pommard clone. · Moderate garnet color in the glass. Dreamy aromas of exuberant black cherry and cardamom spice. An approachable mid-weight style offering flavors of black cherry and dark berries with hints of spice, cola and mocha. Excellent harmony with silken tannins and generous fruit on the finish. Still easy to like when tasted the following day from a previously opened bottle. Score: 93. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Lenné Estate Jill’s 115 Yamhill-Carlton Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 60 cases, $55. Named after Steve’s wife’s mother. · Moderately dark garnet color in the glass. The nose is rather reclusive, even when the wine was sampled the following day from a previously opened bottle. There are hints of dark berry and mocha aromas. A charming mid-weight core of black raspberry, boysenberry and cinnamon spice flavors are in tune with a mild grip of tannin. Intensely fruited on the mid palate with very little oak intrusion and finishing long and dry. Still fine when tasted the following day from a previously opened bottle. Score: 92. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Lenné Estate Karen’s Pommard Yamhill-Carlton Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc. 60 cases, $55. Named after co-founder Karen Lutz. · Moderately dark garnet color in the glass. Comforting aromas of dusty Bing cherry, cola and mocha. The striking mid-weight plus core of delicious dark cherry fruit attacks the palate in waves. There is great purity of fruit, a healthy tannic backbone and a black cherry-embossed, very long finish. The Pommard clone stands on its own better than all other clones of Pinot Noir. When sampled the following day from a previously opened bottle, I simply said, “Really good.” Score: 93. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Lenné Estate Sad Sack 777 Yamill-Carlton Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

14.3% alc., pH 3.79, TA 0.58, 226 cases, $55. Released 10/1/20. The best barrels from the vineyard’s 777 block. 100% de-stemmed, 5- day cold soak, indigenous yeast fermentation, spontaneous MLF, and aged 11 months in French oak barrels, 30% new. · Moderate garnet color in the glass. The nose is dominated by aromas of black fruits, earthy flora and charred oak. Bold and spirited dark berry fruit are featured in a middleweight style. The wine has a beefy tone with an oak thread in the background and lacks nuance, but the persistent finish is packed with intense fruit. Score: 90. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Lenné Estate South Slope Select Yamhill-Carlton Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

Slope Select Yamhill-Carlton Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 14.1% alc., pH 3.81, TA 0.59, 150 cases, $55. Released 9/1/20. 80% Pommard and 20% 115 clones. 100% de-stemmed followed by a 5-day cold soak prior to inoculation. Aged 11 months in French oak barrels, 20% new. · Moderately dark garnet color in the glass. This beauty made me sit up in my chair. Lively aromas of cherry, blueberry and baking spices. Impressive attack and mid-palate length with delicious flavors of black cherry, ripe strawberry and spice. The fruit has energy and elevated status. Commendable harmony with integrated tannins and inviting shafts of acidity, finishing strong and persistent. More forward when tasted the following day from a previously opened bottle. The wine can be enjoyed now but would benefit from decanting or cellaring a few years. Score: 94. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Lenné Estate Cinq Elus Yamhill-Carlton Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., pH 3.79, TA 0.58, 125 cases, $78. Released 9/1/20. The name, cinq élus, means ’five select’ and is a blending of the single best barrel of all five of the Pinot Noir clones planted in the Estate Vineyard. This is the winery’s finest wine and is only produced in exceptional vintages. Steve recommends a minimum of six years of aging as this wine will take longer than the other wines to evolve.. 100% de-stemmed, 5-day cold soak, aged 11 months in French oak barrels, 80% new. · Dark garnet color in the glass. The nose evolves slowly in the glass to reveal aromas of black cherry, cassis and baking spices. Reclusive on first approach, grudgingly revealing mid-weight plus flavors of blackest cherry, black raspberry and purple berries with an interesting riff of Mexican hot chocolate. Redeeming balance with of grip of tannin to insure age ability. More giving and luscious when tasted the following day from a previously opened bottle, displaying the longest finish of all of the 2018 offerings. I have to give this wine extra credit for potential as it is currently tight. Cellar for six years for the full experience. Score: 95. WINERY » ARTICLE »


From Broadley Vineyards

2018 Broadley Vineyards Estate Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 1,300 cases, $35. Released November 2019. Pommard, 115, 667 and 777 clones. 15% whole cluster, wild yeast fermentation. Split into open-top stainless steel fermenters for 14-21 days. Aged 12 months in French oak barrels, 10% new. · Dark garnet color in the glass. A complex nose unfolds with aromas of blackberry, cassis, damp earth and cardamom spice. Somewhat rich and plush on the palate but energetic in a mid-weight style featuring purple and blackberry flavors with a hint of black tea. Nicely balanced with some finishing generosity. Overdelivers for the price. Score: 92. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Broadley Vineyards Claudia’s Choice Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., 225 cases, $55. Released spring 2020. Named for Broadley Vineyards co-founder Claudia Broadley. A blend of Pommard and Wädenswil clones with the majority Pommard. 40% whole cluster, wild yeast fermentation in open-top French oak fermenters. Aged 14-18 months in French oak barrels, 30% new. · Dark garnet color in the glass. The nose gains traction over time in the glass, revealing aromas of spiced black cherry and dried herbs. There are many layers of flavor and noticeable length on the mid palate along with a full mouthfeel. Middleweight in style, with black cherry and boysenberry fruits framed by moderately husky, dusty tannins. The tasteful fruit core makes an impression and is complimented by a touch of oak. Still alluring when tasted the following day from a previously opened bottle. Score: 93. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Broadley Vineyards Jessica Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., 200 cases, $55. Released spring 2020. Named for Morgan Broadley’s wife and working partner in Broadley Vineyards. 100% Wädenswil. 50% whole cluster wild yeast fermentation in French open-top wood fermenters. Aged 14-18 months in French oak barrels, 30% new. · Moderately dark garnet color in the glass. The dark-fruited nose is annotated with aromas of dark rose petal, forest and underbrush. More noticeably whole cluster driven in a mid-weight plus style, with flavors of blackberry and black raspberry. Evident but not intrusive tannins provide a suitable backing for the fruit load. More giving when tasted the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle. Score: 93. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Broadley Vineyards Marcile Lorraine Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

13.8% alc., 125 cases, $55. Released spring 2020. Named for Craig Broadley’s (co-founder) mother. A blend of Dijon 115 and Pommard clones. 50% whole cluster, wild yeast fermentation in open-top French oak fermenters. Aged 14-18 months in French oak barrels, 30% new. · Moderately dark garnet color in the glass. The nose offers clean and alluring scents including blackest cherry, pomegranate and vanilla. A bit lighter on its feet than the other 2018 offerings but with charming, well-spiced, red and black cherry fruit flavors matched to focused tannins. The incredibly long finish seems to last over 30 seconds. Score: 94. WINERY » ARTICLE »

2018 Broadley Vineyards Temperance Hill Vineyard Eola- Amity Hills Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

13.9% alc., 72 cases, $55. Released November 2019.Temperance Hill is a certified organic vineyard planted in 1981 by the Koo family and managed by Dai Crisp since 1999. Soils are predominantly Nekia, Rittner and Jory. Pommard clone. 70% whole cluster, wild yeast fermentation in open-top French oak fermenters. Aged 12 months in French oak barrels, 30% new. · Dark garnet color in the glass. Inviting aromas of blackberry, cherry cola, burnt tobacco and a hint of vanilla. Beautifully crafted in a midweight style with nicely-ripened and exuberant flavors of blackberry and black raspberry. The fruit in this wine really sings. Well-mannered tannins provide good structure and the uplifting acidity brings juiciness. The finish is remarkably long and satisfying. Flat-out terrific when tasted the following day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle with even better integration of tannins. A special wine that will benefit from cellaring. Score: 95. WINERY » ARTICLE »


Robert Parker’s 100 point wine scoring system, which became popular in 1983 and adopted by the Wine Spectator in 1988, has been a homing beacon for consumers seeking to buy good wine. Currently, a majority of United States based wine critics and magazines use the 100 point scale.

The reality is that the 100 point scale is actually a 10 point scale. MORE»
A Note About Prices

Price shown in a tasting note is either the winery-direct price or the retail price paid by the Prince.