Cloudline Pinot Noir 2006
Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
The 2006 Cloudline is deep ruby red, a sign of its classic Pinot Noir character. On the palate,
the wine is soft and round, with a delightful core of cherries and red fruits. The structure is
perhaps even a bit better than the much-admired 2005 Cloudline, and the overall fruitforwardness
makes for a wine that is thoroughly enjoyable now and for the next several years
Cloudline Cellars represents a first for Dreyfus, Ashby--our own wine. Given our love for Pinot Noir and our long history developing Domaine Drouhin Oregon and other fine wines, it's probably not surprising that we would choose Oregon's Willamette Valley as the home for this exciting project.
Our goal is very specific: to create teh best, most delicious and consistent value in Oregon Pinot Noir today. We are fortunate to have access to top sources, growers and vintners who understand and support what we're trying to accomplish. We have also enlisted the expertise of Veronique Drhouin-Boss, who has graciously agreed to be our consulting winemaker, or more appropriately, our "reference palate." In practical terms, she makes sure the quality never wavers.
Sourced from some of the finest vineyards in Oregon.
View all Cloudline Wines
About Willamette Valley
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 is a number of sub-regions, including McMinnville, Dundee and Yamhill.
The 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.
Oregon 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
. There are also coastal regions producing promising wines.
Alcohol By Volume Guide
Most 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.