Argyle Nuthouse Chardonnay 2015
Entirely from the Lone Star Vineyard, 2015 Nuthouse Chardonnay displays the richness and power of the EolaAmity Hills, while still balancing along its fluid frame. Yellow peach, lemon pith, marzipan, and roast cashew flicker around dense, yet crystalline delicacy. Entirely barrel fermented, the wine was allowed to age elegantly on full lees for 16 months in French oak, of which 30% were new. The middle palate fills the mouth with weight and texture, while finishing with persistence and definition.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
This focused pinot noir shows aromas of jasmine, hibiscus and white lotus. Dried strawberries and plums, too. Medium body, firm and velvety tannins and a vibrant finish. I like the tannic tension here and the austerity. Delicious now but better in 2019.
Polished and harmonious, with expressive Asian pear and spice aromas and seamlessly complex apple and mineral flavors.
Richer and oakier than the regular Argyle Chardonnay, this conveys flavors of Honey Crisp apple, framed with a palate-pleasing toastiness. It's balanced and already drinking in a prime window.
Twenty-five years ago, Argyle began making wine in Oregon's Willamette Valley. Since 1987, winemaker Rollin Soles and viticulturist Allen Holstein have teamed up to produce world-class method champenoise sparkling wines, barrel-fermented Chardonnay, and silky-textured Pinor Noir from low-yielding vines that are winery farmed on some of the best hillside slopes and elevations. Argyle wines have received a total of 11 Wine Spectator Top 100 designations - more than any other winery in Oregon. The Argyle wines represented on this list include sparkling wine, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, truly making Argyle one of the finest practitioners of the craft of elegant, long-lived winegrowing.
Running north to south, adjacent to the Willamette River, the Eola-Amity Hills AVA has shallow and well-drained soils created from ancient lava flows (called Jory), marine sediments, rocks and alluvial deposits. These soils force vine roots to dig deep, producing small grapes with great concentration.
Like in the McMinnville sub-AVA, cold Pacific air streams in via the Van Duzer Corridor and assists the maintenance of higher acidity in its grapes. This great concentration, combined with marked acidity, give the Eola-Amity Hills wines—namely Pinot noir—their distinct character. While the region covers 40,000 acres, no more than 1,400 acres are covered in vine.
One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.