2014 Division Pinot Noir 'Trois'
2014 Division Pinot Noir "Trois"
Eola-Amity Hills AVA
The Willamette Valley is typically one of the coolest and wettest major wine growing regions in the U.S, which clearly favors the delicate, but seemingly boundless potential of the Pinot Noir grape that seems to show its best on the fringes of suitable grape farming climates. While 2014 was not a cool and wet year, it was one of those extremely rare vintages where we experienced enough warmth throughout the season, as well as harvest time dry weather to bring in really amazing high quality grapes at the optimal moment!
And what a year for us to start what we hope to be a long and amazing adventure with storied and pedigreed Temperance Hill Vineyard. First planted in 1980 on what is believed to be the remnants of an active volcano, this Certified Organic vineyard is situated between 660 and 860 feet in elevation on Nekia, Jory and Rittner soils. The elevation aspect lead to warm and sunny days and very cool evenings, which helps the Pinot Noir from Temperance retain its legendary acidity while still demonstating intensity and complete phenolic ripeness. Temperance Hill is farmed by Dai Crisp, one of the best viticulturists in Oregon, or in the U.S. for that matter, with impeccable care and dedication - we are amazed by him. In other words, this is a seriously spectacular vineyard that we are honored to be making wine from.
Our block at Temperance is the called the “Upper Bench”, which was planted in 2002 and is located near the crest of the original planting of Pinot Noir and Gewürztraminer. We went with a favorite combo of the elegant and red fruit oriented Dijon 777 anchored with the earthy and rustic Pommard clones. The co- fermented lot was fermented by utilizing a pied de cuve build up from the native flora on the site picked a week for before harvesting the blocks. A small portion of whole cluster, less than 25%, was layered in the ferment to help add more savory aspects as the warmer year tends to show for fruitiness. Our harvested grapes were beautiful and picked at what we believe was a perfect moment at 23.5 brix and 3.25 pH with nice ripe phenolic flavors and softening skins.
We aged the two barrel blend for 16 months in a combination of a one year old and a neutral barrel, which was then racked for two months of tank ageing. The result is perhaps our most intense and austere Pinot Noir. The initial aromatics are pure Pinot Noir traits with deep black cherrys and fresh dried tobacco leaves. This ruby colored wine is all cherry and intense mineral on the palate that has soft coating tannins that fit perfectly with the textual components. This is definitely our most complex Pinot Noir to date and a wine worth holding for sometime as there is still much to give!
Vineyard - Temperance Hill (Organic) - Eola-Amity Hills AVA Harvest – September 27th, Brix 23.5
Fermentation/Ageing - 75% destemmed and chilled prior to pied de cuve inoculation. All French Oak ageing in two barrels. This wine was neither fined, nor filtered, and received 40ppm total so2.