WillaKenzie Estate Pinot Blanc 2008
Pinot Blanc from Willamette Valley, Oregon
The 2008 Pinot Blanc displays gemlike clarity and a pale green hue that makes the complex and powerful aromas that leap from the glass all the more surprising. The initial impression of stone fruits is followed by hints of lime, lemongrass and clover honey. The flavors follow the aromas with highlights of lively grapefruit, gooseberry and a pleasing minerality combining to create a clean and refreshing palate impression. Crisp acidity balances the fruit while the finish offers silky texture and unexpected length. Enjoy this wine by itself as an apéritif, or pair it with shellfish, sushi, sashimi, Thai Food and pasta primavera. It is ready to drink now, but will certainly benefit from two or three years in the cellar. Serve well chilled.
In WillaKenzie's gravity-flow winery, the 2008 Pinot Blanc was made in a rich and complex Alsatian style. The winery pressed whole clusters, and after cold settling of the juice, inoculated with a special selection of yeasts, chosen to enhance the fruit's aromatics. the juice was fermented in stainless-steel tanks slowly and at low temperatures to retain the freshness and subtlety of the fruit.
Wine Enthusiast - "This is a truly lovely, elegant Pinot Blanc, from a winery that has a fine handle on the grape. Scents of lemongrass and grapefruit run headlong into delicate, evocative fruit flavors of melon, gooseberry, lime and stone fruits. Though quite dry and tart, it has so much complexity that it never turns sour."
WillaKenzie Estate Winery
WillaKenzie Estate is located in Oregon's Willamette Valley on rolling hillsides in the Chehalem Mountains. The winery was named after the Willakenzie soil on which the vineyards are planted to convey the influence that the soil imparts on the wine's flavors and aromas. The vineyards are planted with grapes of the Pinot family, mostly new Dijon clones of Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris from Alsace. Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris are cool climate grapes, which are particularly well adapted to Oregon. View all WillaKenzie Estate 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 & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.