2008 Amalie Robert, Amalie’s Cuvée, $53.75
Winery info: In June, Dena Drews and Ernie Pink, owners and proprietors of Amalie Robert, dropped by the shop and tasted us on some of their current releases. It was great to catch up with them and be reminded of how much we love their very-small-production wines, which are not in wide distribution up here. Founded in 1999, they are based in the central Willamette Valley, just outside Dallas, Oregon, where they sustainably farm about 30 acres. All of their fruit is dry-farmed and they use only estate fruit for their wines. By the way, the winery name is taken from their two middles names so no need to French-ify it: AIM-a-lee Robert (with the T voiced).
Winemaker: Ernie Pink
Grapes: This wine is a barrel selection of Pinot Noir, representing the unique qualities of the different blocks of their vineyard. They look for barrels that “offer complexity and intriguing nuances, with layers of fruit and texture” each year, and blend them to reveal the “elegance and grace of Oregon Pinot Noir”
Vineyard source: Their estate vineyard, with sedimentary soils.
Flavor profile: Very elegant and high-toned, with great depth and concentration and a lovely, lingering finish.
Production/Availability: Limited production and, as an older vintage, there is not much left of this one.
Drinkability: Now or over the next five to ten years.
Food Pairing: They suggest roast whole duck with chanterelle or morel mushrooms (over candlelight for two!)
2014 Amalie Robert, Pinot Meunier, $32.25
Grapes: 100% Pinot Meunier, one of the three major grapes in Champagne, not often seen as a varietal in a still wine. It tends to produce elegant wines that are aromatic, light-bodied, and fruity, with soft tannins and spice.
Vineyard sources: Their estate vineyard, which has one half acre planted to this grape. From the warm 2014 vintage.
Flavor profile: Smooth, round, and very pretty, with aromas of ripe cherry and bittersweet chocolate. On the palate it is juicy and savory and, as they note, “as elegant as the day is long.”
Production/Availability: They made only 75 cases, but there may still be a bit available.
Drinkability: This wine is ready to drink any time
Food Pairing: They suggest pairing their Pinot Meunier with wild game, duck confit, or grilled veal chop.