Brittan Basalt Block Pinot Noir 2007
Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
The 2007 Basalt Block Pinot Noir exhibits rich, red fruit flavors of black cherry and ripe plums, with underlying hints of cassis and allspice, an elegant texture and weight on the palate, and a long, pleasing finish.
Wine Enthusiast - "Tasted alongside the winemaker's 2006 from the same fruit, this shows both vintage variation and consistent terroir-the marks of a real professional. The complexity and vitality of the wine remain comparable to the riper 2006. Tart fruits, leaf, herb and streaks of earth make for a lively, interesting palate-pleaser."
Robert Brittan searched for years to find the ideal site on which to grow Pinot Noir, and finally found it on this 128-acre hillside in Oregon, which he purchased in December 2004. The soils are a mixture of glacial deposits and volcanic material, with a predominant presence of broken basalt. The vines have east, south and west exposures to choose from on a cool, windy site on the edge of the Coastal Range. As a result, Brittan believes he has found a site where he can grow unique wines, wines that truly speak of this place. His selection of this particular site was the culmination of extensive research of potential vineyard sites. The deciding factors in selecting this site were the compelling mix of soils, solar orientation and micro-climates indicative of the world’s greatest Pinot Noir vineyards. View all Brittan Wines
About Willamette ValleyView a map of Willamette Valley wineries (will-AAM-it)
Named for the river that runs through the valley from Portland to Eugene, Willamette Valley is home to some of the best Pinot Noir vineyards in the Northwest. While along the same north/south line as Seattle, the Willamette Valley is protected from Pacific rains by the Coast Range on the western border and the Cascade Ranges to the east. Though sunshine is typically plentiful, rainfall can occasionally be tricky, and the wines here vary vintage to vintage. Within the Willamette Valley are are number of sub-regions, including McMinnville, Dundee and Yamhill.
Notable FactsThe valley is known for its Pinots – Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris. With a climate similar to Burgundy – in rainfall, sunlight hours and other climate factors – Pinot Noir has flourished here. Pinot Noir in Oregon produces wines that are fruit forward, yet complex, some with good agebility.
Other than Pinot Noir, many wineries grow Pinot Gris and Chardonnay. Pinot Gris from Oregon is delightful in its texture and food friendliness. Chardonnay in the valley adapts well to the cool climate and produces lean, elegant wines.
About OregonOregon has long been an agricultural state, producing everything from hazelnuts to cattle. The Willamette Valley in particular is a fertile basin for all sorts of produce. Not quite pegged as a wine state, in 1965, a UC Davis graduate named David Lett decided that the Willamette's climate mirrored that of Burgundy in France. With that in mind, he decided to plant some Pinot Noir clones to see how they did. And a good gamble it was. The Willamette is now one of the only regions in the world to focus solely on Pinot Noir as its red variety. Also known for Chardonnay and Pinot Gris. The southern part of Oregon has been slower in delving into the world wine market, but has been making excellent strides with their Rhone style varietals, like Syrah and Grenache. There are also coastal regions producing promising wines.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
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