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Autumn Wind Muller Thurgau 1998
One of Pinot Noir’s most successful New World outposts, the Willamette Valley is the largest and most important AVA in Oregon. With a Mediterranean climate moderated by a Pacific Ocean influence, it is perfect for cool-climate viticulture—warm and dry summers allow for steady, even ripening, and frost is rarely a risk during spring and winter.
Mountain ranges bordering three sides of the valley, particularly the Chehalem Mountains, provide the option for higher-elevation, cooler vineyard sites. The three prominent soil types here create significant differences in wine styles between vineyards and sub-AVAs. The iron-rich, basalt-based Jory volcanic soils found commonly in the Dundee Hills are rich in clay and hold water well; the chalky, sedimentary soils of Ribbon Ridge, Yamhill-Carlton and McMinnville encourage complex root systems as vines struggle to search for water and minerals. Silty, loess soils are found in the Chehalem Mountains.
Müller-Thurgau is a white grape variety created by Hermann Müller in the Swiss Canton of Thurgau in 1882. He crossed Riesling with the table grape, Madeleine Royale, with the goal of making a delightful drinking wine from an easier-to-grow vine than Riesling. When done right, Müller-Thurgau is full-bodied with floral aromatics. It has a refreshing, ripe, peach character that balances a crunchy and crisp quality. Müller-Thurgau makes white wine in Germany, Austria, Northern Italy, Hungary, England, Australia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, New Zealand, the United States and Japan. While some of its best examples actually come from the Alto Adige region of Italy, it is still the second most widely planted white grape in Germany second to Riesling. Worldwide, it is one of the most widely planted of the new breeds created since the 19th century.