This month’s club pays tribute to esteemed Oregon winemaker, Patty Green, who died in an apparent fall at her remote cabin in Roseburg on November 6 at the age of 62. Patty helped start Torii Mor Winery in 1993 and went on to purchase a 52-acre property in the Ribbon Ridge AVA where she and her business and winemaking partner Jim Anderson founded Patricia Green Cellars in 2000. The winery became one of Oregon’s most respected wineries, even though Patty always preferred to keep a low profile and did not seek out accolades or recognition. We don’t know what the future will bring for the winery, but for now, enjoy some of the work of this talented winemaker and raise a glass to a life too short.
2015 Patricia Green, Durant Vineyard, Bishop Block Pinot Noir, $48
Grapes: 100% Pinot Noir, Pommard Clone
Vineyard source: Durant Vineyard, planted in 1973 in the Dundee Hills, down the hill from Balcombe (below) and adjacent to Domaine Drouhin’s estate vineyard. It is one of Oregon’s oldest vineyards, established just a few years after David Lett (“Papa Pinot”) planted his first vines just a few hundred yards away. The site has a southern exposure and rich, red, volcanic Jory soil.
Flavor profile: Very elegant and inviting, with lush flavors of dark currant and cherry. It exhibits the subtlety and finesse that is achieved only by skilled hands and older, established vines.
Production/Availability: 318 cases produced. The winery is sold out, but the distributor still has some left.
Drinkability: This one is drinking beautifully now, but should continue to develop even further over the next ten years.
Food Pairing: Both of these Pinots would be perfect for any special meal, such as Boeuf Bourguignon, lamb, grilled salmon, mushroom risotto, or coq au vin.
2015 Patricia Green, Balcombe Vineyard, Pinot Noir, $35
Grapes: 100% Pinot Noir
Vineyard sources: Balcombe Vineyard, situated near the top of the Dundee Hills with a west sloping exposure. It was planted in 1990 with Pommard clone Pinot on rich, red volcanic Jory soil formed from ancient volcanic basalt. They have worked with this vineyard every year since 1997.
Flavor profile: This offering is aromatic, silky textured and deeply flavorful, with a bit more meatiness than the Durant, above. The winery notes that their Balcombe Vineyard bottling “is the quintessential Dundee Hills Pinot Noir that we make.”
Production/Availability: 571 cases. The winery is sold out, but the distributor still has some left.
Drinkability: Their website says, “Drink it for its lovely, youthful nature or save it because it will be a delicious treat ten-plus years into the future. Either way you cannot lose.”
Food Pairing: As with the Durant Vineyard Pinot, Boeuf Bourguignon, lamb, grilled salmon, mushroom risotto, or coq au vin would all go beautifully with this wine.