Chehalem Reserve Pinot Noir 2008
Pinot Noir from Oregon
Incorporating both Ridgecrest and Wind Ridge blocks from our original Ridgecrest Vineyard on Ribbon Ridge, this reserve shows the richness, density, three-dimensionality, and finesse that characterizes this AVA, at least for Chehalem wines. The half-crop yield in 2008 and cool growing season teamed with a long final ripening period gives maximum complexity and concentration. Tightly packed, this vintage will be lovely early on, but will not completely open for years and will reward aging. The aromas are red and black briery fruits, hints of dried flower, black tea and cola. The flavors are dense red fruit and complex baking spices, and the texture is silk nap, firm but very elegant, and, with good acidity, promises long aging.
Wine Spectator - "Polished, open-textured and inviting for its cinnamon-accented red berry and wet earth flavors, mingling effectively on the refined finish. A bit disjointed, but cellaring should bring it all together nicely. Best from 2013 through 2020. 671 cases made."
Wine Enthusiast - "The 2008 Oregon Pinot Noir Reserve, sourced entirely from the Ribbon Ridge AVA, was a selection of the most elegant barrels in the cellar. It proffers a sensual perfume worthy Catherine Deneuve, a silky texture with subtle flavors of wild cherry and raspberry, outstanding concentration, and well-concealed tannins that will allow 4-6 years of graceful evolution. This lengthy, finesse-filled effort will be at its best from 2014 to 2023, but that is a conservative estimate.
Under the direction of founder/winemaker Harry Peterson-Nedry, Chehalem has taken full advantage of the great 2008 vintage and produced its finest set of Pinot Noirs to date."
With two vineyards on either end of Chehalem Ridge and one in the Dundee Hills, Chehalem is dedicated to reflecting as purely as possible what the vineyard has produced. With minimal processing and without compromising great fruit, Chehalem wines promise good ageing but are very drinkable young. Production quantities of all Chehalem wines are limited, to assure ultimate winemaking control. View all Chehalem Wines
About Other OregonView a map of Other Oregon wineries
Like many other states, Oregon itself is an AVA of note. An Oregon wine can simply state "Oregon" as its place of origin, which typically means the grapes came from multiple smaller AVAs within the state.
Beyond the main AVAs of Oregon, like Willamette Valley, Rogue and Umpqua, smaller regions are gaining ground. Some you may see on the label include:
Walla Walla Valley AVA– these are most often associated with Washington State, but technically they run over the state lines into Oregon. Most wineries only use a small fraction of grapes from the Oregon side in order to maintain a Washington State wine, but you may see some Oregon producers sourcing grapes from those small overlapping AVAs.
Southern Oregon AVA– encompassing the Rogue and Umpqua Valleys, this AVA is a large area where many producers are experimenting with Syrah.
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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