More Reviews – three Vincent 2014s from Burghound

I’ve been better about sending my wines out for reviews at the major wine publications. Last month I received excellent reviews from Vinous Media.

This month I see the Burgundy-centric publication Burghound has published nice reviews of three of my 2014 wines.

I’m particularly happy about both sets of reviews because these are good scores from tough graders, and publications I read and really respect. I won’t lie, it’s nice to see what they think about my efforts.

From Burghound issue 64, January 2017:

2014 Pinot Noir – Eola Amity Hills: (SRP $27, 12.9%). A spicy, cool and restrained nose features airy notes of red cherry, currant and discreet floral nuances. There is good vibrancy and detail to the delicious, clean and focused middle weight flavors that terminate in a dusty, linear and moderately dry (in the best sense) finale. This mildly austere effort could be enjoyed young but I would be inclined to allow it a few years of bottle age to help flesh out the finish. 88/2019+

2014 Pinot Noir – Bjornson Vineyard: (Eola Amity Hills, SRP $39, 12.9%). A slightly riper nose is composed by equally cool aromas of maraschino cherry, violet, lavender and pretty spice hints. Here too there is good energy and delineation to the delicious and sleek medium-bodied flavors that possess a bit more mid-palate density, all wrapped in a dusty and less linear finish that is both longer and more complex. This is really quite good and while it could use a few years to develop better overall depth, the underlying material is present such that this should occur. Worth checking out. 90/2021+

2014 Pinot Noir – Zenith Vineyard: (Eola Amity Hills, SRP $39, 13.5%). Here the nose is easily the most deeply pitched of the three cuvées with its plum, violet, blue pinot fruit and soft floral nuances. There is both good volume and underlying tension to the delicious, focused and punchy medium-bodied flavors that possess a relatively refined mouth feel while delivering fine depth on the mildly austere finale. This too could use a few years of bottle age to unwind and to add depth but this too appears to have the supporting material such it could develop in time. 90/2022+


New mailing list offer coming February 1

I’m releasing several new wines this spring, and as usual I’m offering them to my mailing list first at the best prices of the year. Most of these wines are VERY limited (details below), so if you want any chance to get them, sign up for my mailing list here.

The highlights of this upcoming offer are three new 2015 single vineyard Pinot Noir, a new Eola-Amity Hills cuvee of Pinot, and the first ever “Tardive” releases of white wines that demanded extra barrel aging before bottling. Tardive means “late” and these two exceptional whites, 2015 Chardonnay “Tardive” and 2015 Pinot Blanc “Tradeoff” are worth the wait.

Here are all the details – remember most of these wines are made in tiny quantities so get on the mailing list to make sure you receive an allocation:

2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Bjornson Vineyard – $39 retail
This year’s Bjornson vineyard designate is 100% Pomade clone aged for 18 months in barrel, racked last August from younger French oak to older barrels before bottling without filtration. Picked on September 8 at 22.3 brix, the grapes had incredible intensity after a warm summer transitioned suddenly to cool, dry fall weather from the end of August. The wine shows classic raspberry fruit and spice of this volcanic site with a tension that should reward many years of cellaring. 2 barrels produced

2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Zenith Vineyard – $39 retail
Zenith is also 100% Pommard clone, from the same small parcel of vines I’ve worked with for years. As with the Bjornson, this wine was racked last August into neutral casks and bottled in early 2017 without filtration. The grapes were picked here at 21.9 brix on September 13, with fresh acidity but no shortage of depth and concentration in the finished wine. Zenith is always a bit more broad shouldered than my other wines and this year’s example should age effortlessly for at least a decade. 2 barrels

2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Silvershot Vineyard – $39 retail
Silvershot is the new name for Crowley Station Vineyard, renamed after a trademark dispute in the past year. New name but it’s another classic savory red fruited wine from this cool, windy site on the far southwest part of the Eola Hills. The grapes here were harvest on September 18 from own-rooted vines in the oldest part of the vineyard, planted in 2000. (Grapes from the younger west block, picked earlier in September, all went to the Eola-Amity Hills bottling). As with Zenith and Bjornson, the Silvershot was bottled after 18 months in cask with no filtration. It shows some light toast notes mixing with the dense but lively cherry fruit and delicate herb notes, finishing with a fine worsted texture. 2 barrels

2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills – $27 retail
This year’s Eola-Amity Hills bottling is a blend of Bjornson, Zenith, Silvershot and (new to me) Temperance Hill vineyards. The result is a classic expression of my home AVA, with a softer texture than the vineyard wines blended for earlier consumption. Don’t be afraid to hold on to this bottling though – examples going back to my first vintage 2009 are still drinking wonderfully. Bottled last August to capture its youthful freshness and held for spring release. 10 barrels

2015 Vincent Pinot Blanc Willamette Valley “Tardive” – $23 retail
This is the first of two brand new wines I’m labeling as “Tardive.” That all simply means the barrels here tasted so good, so focused that I held them back for longer aging on the lees (yeast sediments) for maximum flavor development. While most of my 2015 Pinot Blanc was bottled last August and released last fall, two special barrels of that wine have aged longer for a late or “tardive” bottling. The result is an extra creamy texture that gives this bright, citrusy Pinot Blanc even more finesse than the regular bottling. Think of it as a true reserve wine, held back and bottled separately because it deserves the spotlight. 2 barrels

2015 Vincent Chardonnay Willamette Valley “Tardive” – $29 retail
Where the Blanc “Tardive” is essentially the same wine as the regular bottling, just longer on the lees, the Chardonnay “Tardive” is something different still. Bear with me here. In 2015 I had the opportunity to work with the old 108 clone of Chardonnay for the first time. If you know the story of Chardonnay in the Willamette Valley, this California clone (one of the Wente clones, in fact) was widely planted in Oregon decades ago but largely given up because it supposedly wasn’t right for our cool climate. Maybe it’s climate change, more likely it’s both farming advances and the fact that the one big knock on the 108 clone was its tendency to hold onto its acid (like that’s a bad thing!) turns out to be a boon for those of us who like the freshness and structure acidity brings to great Chardonnay. Whatever it is, I’m a huge fan of the old 108 clone and yes, I secured more of it in 2016 and beyond. However, in 2015 I made just one single barrel from 1980s vines at Namaste vineyard in the soon to be official Van Duzer AVA in the cool hills west of the Eola Hills. I blended this one barrel of 108 with another barrel of Dijon clone Chardonnay from Apolloni vineyard that anchored the regular 2015 Chardonnay released last fall. The result is the best Chardonnay I’ve made to date, the lemon and apple flavors of the Appoloni mixing with the pears and seashell qualities of the 108 to give a Chardonnay truly expressive of the Willamette Valley. 2 barrels

These wines will all be officially released on Memorial Day weekend, but if you’re on my mailing list you can get first access to them on February 1 at special prerelease pricing. All of these 2 barrel lots mean just 50 cases of each are available for the world. Most won’t make it into distribution, so you need to buy direct or from the handful of Portland shops and restaurants that will get these wines if you want to make sure to get some yourself.Sign up for the Vincent mailing list here.

Vincent wines reviewed by Vinous Media

I was pleased to wake up today to see nice reviews of some of my currently available wines by the esteemed Josh Raynolds of Vinous. I’ve read his reviews for years, cool to see him write up a few of my wines.

From Vinous:

2014 Vincent Pinot Noir Bjornson Vineyard – 92 pts
Deep red. Smoke-accented dark berries and cherry cola on the fragrant nose; mineral and spice flourishes add vivacity. Sappy, concentrated bitter cherry and black raspberry flavors are lifted by a bright floral quality and a suggestion of white pepper. rich but energetic as well, delivering strong finishing cut and smoky persistence. Drink 2019-2025

2014 Vincent Pinot Noir Zenith Vineyard – 92 pts
Vivid ruby-red. Powerful, smoke-and spice-tinged cherry and black raspberry aromas, along with hints of cola and lavender that gain strength with aeration. Sappy and expansive on the palate, offering bitter cherry and dark berry flavors that turn sweeter and more lively on the back half. Smoothly plays its vivacity off the richness of the vintage and finishes impressively long and sweet, with gentle tannins making a cameo appearance. Drink 219-2025

2014 Vincent Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills – 90 pts
Brilliant red. Fresh red and dark berry aromas are complemented by suggestions of floral oil and white pepper. Juicy and light on its feet, offering gently sweet black raspberry and rose pastille flavors and a hint of blood orange that adds bracing cut. Lingers with very good, fruity persistence, showing just a hint of tannins and lingering spiciness. Drink 2018-2022

Thanksgiving weekend at the winery

Just a quick reminder that we have our annual Thanksgiving weekend open house at the winery, this Friday and Saturday, November 25 & 26, noon-5pm each day.

Location is Grochau Cellars, where I make my Vincent wines. Address is 9360 SE Eola Hills Road just up the hill from Brooks Winery.

For $15 tasting fee, you can taste my new releases as well as the full line up of wines from Grochau as well as Upper Five Vineyard from southern Oregon. Three producers under one roof, and purchase wines together for quantity discounts. Come have some fun in at the winery.

Note, my wines will be there Friday but I will be traveling. I will be there in the flesh on Saturday so come then if you want to chat.


Events in November

Now that harvest is done, it’s time for lots of events at the winery. Here’s what’s going on in November.

First, if you’re a member of my mailing list, you’re invited to a mailing list only tasting and pick up event at the winery on Sunday, November 6 from noon to 4pm. Location is Grochau Cellars, where I make my wine, 9360 SE Eola Hills Road outside of Amity. Come taste new wines from 2015 and pick up your pre-release order if you made a purchase. All new wines will be for sale, including the otherwise sold out 2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Armstrong Vineyard.

Next, I’m partnering with John Grochau of Grochau Cellars on Saturday, November 19, to do a special pre-Thanksgiving, low-fi tasting at the winery – all the latest wines from both producers and some special bottles without the Thanksgiving crowds. We’ll be there noon to 5pm, details on social media.

And of course, Thanksgiving weekend I’ll be pouring at the winery with Grochau Cellars and Upper Five Vineyard from southern Oregon. Taste all three producers for one price, combine orders for quantity discounts on bottles you want to take home. Thanksgiving is traditionally the top weekend of the year to go wine tasting in Oregon. It’s such a nice way to join the celebration of the recent harvest. Please come visit!

Mailing list offer for first 2015s now available

This week my first offer of my 2015 vintage wines went out to the mailing list. To join my list, simply email me here.

The deal is simple – I give my mailing list members first chance at all my latest wines, at the best pricing I offer. This year, order by Monday, September 12, 2016, to get this special pre-release pricing.

Here are the six wines I’m offering:

2015 Vincent Pinot Blanc Willamette Valley – reg $20, pre-release $16
2015 Vincent Chardonnay Willamette Valley – reg $23, pre-release $18

2015 Vincent Gamay Noir Willamette Valley – reg $20, pre-release $16 (limit 6)
2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Willamette Valley – reg $23, pre-release $18

2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Ribbon Ridge – reg $27, pre-release $21
2015 Vincent Pinot Noir Armstrong Vineyard – red $39, pre-release $30

There’s free ground shipping in the continental US on 12 bottle cases of $300 or more, and free shipping for all orders over $500. Orders must be in by Monday, September 12. Join my mailing list here.

Next spring I’ll have the rest of the 2015s, including Eola-Amity Hills and single vineyards from Silvershot (renamed Crowley Station), Zenith, Bjornson and, yes, Temperance Hill (very special).

I’m also looking to late bottle a special Chardonnay, but stay tuned for any more details on that for a bit.

Again, join my mailing list by simply emailing me. There’s never an obligation to buy, but I try to offer handmade, real wine at fair prices that I hope you enjoy and choose to buy again and again. Thanks for your support.


Plate & Pitchfork dinner August 21

Plate & PitchforkReserve your seats for our special Plate & Pitchfork dinner at the winery on August 21.

Plate & Pitchfork dinners have been going on for more than a decade, always incredible feasts in natural settings including farms and, as in our case, wineries.

Chefs from Portland restaurants Old Salt Marketplace and Grain & Gristle will prepare all food onsite, paired with wines from friends Grochau Cellars and Upper Five Vineyard, as well as (of course) Vincent.

Plus, the Pip’s Original doughnut truck will be there for incredible treats.

Sign up ASAP to guarantee your spot, and use the code “wine” at checkout for a discount on the event price.

Hope to see you at Grochau Cellars in the Eola-Amity Hills AVA for this special dinner event on the 21st!