2014 Fullerton Wines, Momtazi Pinot Noir, $58
Winery Info: Fullerton is a small, family- owned and -operated winery that started in a garage in 2011. Founders Eric and Susanne Fullerton are now very ably assisted by their son, Alex who shared their passion for wine from a very early age. They source their fruit from a number of select vineyard sites in the Willamette Valley, as well as their own Ivy Slope Estate Vineyard in Beaverton.
Winemaker: Alex Fullerton, who has worked at Penner-Ash and Bergström, as well as in New Zealand.
Grapes: 100% Pinot Noir, all Dijon clone. Aged 18 months in barrel, 13% of which was new French oak.
Vineyard source: Momtazi, a bio-dynamically farmed vineyard in the McMinnville AVA in the northern Willamette Valley. It has a mix of sedimentary and volcanic soils and the long warm days are cooled at night by the coastal winds blowing through the Van Duzer Corridor. The vineyard produces wines with dark fruit flavors and rich tannins.
Flavor profile: 2014 was a hot vintage that tended to produce very ripe wines. But the cool evening winds through the Van Duzer Corridor helped maintain balancing acidity in those from Momtazi. This wine is medium-bodied, with aromas and flavors of dark fruit, toasted hazelnuts, and fresh herbs. It has finely-textured tannins and a nice hint of earthiness and spice.
Production/Availability: 375 cases produced. The distributer has just a bit of this one left.
Drinkability: Enjoy now through 2024.
Food Pairing: This wine would pair well with braised meats or mushroom dishes.
2016 Cowhorn, Spiral 36, $29.75
Winery Info: Bill and Barbara Steele purchased their southern Oregon property in the Applegate Valley in 2002. After studying the terroir, they found that parts of the site had very similar characteristics to that of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, in southern France. They proceeded to plant southern Rhône grape varietals and continue to focus on Rhône-style wines. They farm bio-dynamically and are Demeter certified.
Winemakers: Bill and Barbara Steele
Grapes: 45% Viognier, 30% Marsanne, 25% Roussanne, co-fermented for added complexity and seamlessness. Aged in mostly neutral French oak for four months.
Vineyard source: Block 3 for the Viognier and 6 for the Marsanne and Roussanne (hence the name Spiral 36) from their estate vineyard in southern Oregon’s Applegate Valley.
Flavor profile: A beautiful balance of freshness and richness, with soft, delicate texture and savory flavors of ripe peach and almonds. The flavors continue on the long, lingering finish.
Production/Availability: They make 600 to 900 cases a year. It should be in good supply for a while
Drinkability: Delicious now through 2022
Food Pairing: They suggest pork chops with apple hash.