Oregon Wine Club – October 2020

2014 Shea Wine Cellars, West Hill, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, $60

Winery Info: Shea has long been one of the most coveted vineyards in Oregon and a source of fruit for some of the top wineries in the state such as Beaux Frères, Ken Wright, St. Innocent, and Antica Terra. It was first planted by Dick Shea in the late 1980s and it now consists of 140 acres of vines, of which 135 are planted to Pinot Noir. After years of selling fruit to other wineries, Dick and his wife Deirdre began their own winery in 1996 “to create their own expression of Shea Vineyard terroir.” They now use about 20% of their fruit for their own wines and continue to sell the remaining grapes to other fortunate producers.

Grapes: 100% Pinot Noir, Wädenswil, Dijon 777, and Pommard clones, aged in 50% new French oak.

Vineyard: Shea Vineyard, blocks 23, 29, and 30. The Yamhill-Carlton vineyard sits on sedimentary soil over fractured sandstone.

Flavor profile: Shea Vineyard Pinots tend to be supple and elegant, with beautiful texture. This one is complex, savory, and very aromatic, with notes of violet, typical of the vineyard, and flavors of red fruit, cocoa, and forest floor.

Production: 245 cases made. The winery has a small amount left.

Drinkability: The winery recommends enjoying it anytime now through 2026.

Food Pairing: You could pair this one with salmon, of course, but our rep notes it would also stand up to red meat dishes, perhaps with white asparagus and a Béarnaise sauce.

2013 Vine & Supply, Pinot Noir, $28

Winery Info: André Hueston Mack left a successful career in the financial world to pursue his passion for wine. He became a sommelier and was awarded the title of “Best Young Sommelier in America” not long after, which led to work at Napa Valley’s French Laundry and Per Se in New York City. In 2007 he founded Mouton Noir Wines (now Maison Noir) in McMinnville—a “micro negociant” with a focus on specific terroirs in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. For his Vine & Supply label, he partners with some of the top growers in the valley to produce wines from a variety of clones, soil types, and microclimates that reflect the character of their individual sites and terroirs.

Winemaker: André Hueston Mack

Grapes: 100% Pinot Noir. Aged 12 months in French oak, about 70% neutral and 30% new, followed by 12 months in bottle before release.

Vineyard: Sourced from vineyards planted between 400 to 800 feet in elevation on red Jory clay (on the hills) and Willakenzie soil at lower elevations.

Flavor profile: Warm, savory, and inviting, with silky texture and elegant flavors of cherry and ripe red fruit, and hints of spice and cedar. All leading to a long, complex, balanced finish.

Production: Around 500 cases made. The distributor should have it in stock for a while longer.

Drinkability: Enjoy now through around 2025.

Food Pairing: Our rep suggested duck (dark meat), rabbit, Daube (a Provençal stew), or even cassoulet.