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Chehalem Reserve Pinot Noir 2008

Pinot Noir from Oregon
  • WS93
  • WE92
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Winemaker Notes

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.

Critical Acclaim

WS 93
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.

WE 92
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.

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Chehalem

Chehalem

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Chehalem, , Oregon
Chehalem
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.

Marlborough

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Home to perhaps the world’s most easily recognizable Sauvignon Blanc...

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Home to perhaps the world’s most easily recognizable Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough has a unique terroir that lends a unifying thread to all of its wines. But despite common misconceptions, the wines from this region at the northern tip of New Zealand’s South Island are anything but homogenous. With well-draining stony soils and a dry, sunny climate, the vineyards of Marlborough benefit from wide temperature fluctuations between day and night, which helps to preserve natural acidity in their fruit.

The region’s specialty, Sauvignon Blanc, is beloved for its pungent, aromatic character with notes of exotic tropical fruit, freshly cut grass, and green bell pepper along with a refreshing streak of stony minerality. These wines are made in a wide range of styles, and winemakers take advantage of various clones and vineyards sites as well as fermentation, lees-stirring, and aging regimens to differentiate their bottlings from one another. Also produced successfully here are fruit-forward Pinot Noirs, elegant Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Gewürztraminer, and a wide range of Chardonnay styles, as well as more experimental varieties like Grüner Veltliner and Syrah.

Sauvignon Blanc

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A crisp, refreshing variety that equally reflects both terroir and varietal character...

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A crisp, refreshing variety that equally reflects both terroir and varietal character, Sauvignon Blanc is responsible for a vast array of wine styles. A couple of commonalities always exist, however—namely, zesty acidity and intense aromatics. The variety is of French provenance, and is important in Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. It also shines in New Zealand and California, while Chile and South Africa are excellent sources of high-quality, value-priced Sauvignon Blanc. High-quality Sauvignon Blanc is also produced in Washington State, Australia, and parts of northern Italy.

In the Glass

From its homeland in the Loire Valley, where citrus, flinty, and smoky flavors shine through in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume, to Marlborough, New Zealand, where it is pungent, racy, and “green” (think grass, leaves, gooseberries, and bell peppers) and tastes of grapefruit and passionfruit, Sauvignon Blanc has something to offer every wine drinker. In Bordeaux, it is typically blended with Sémillon and Muscadelle to produce a softer, richer style. In California, any of the aforementioned styles can be emulated.

Perfect Pairings

The freshness of Sauvignon Blanc’s flavor—from bell pepper and cut grass to passionfruit, gooseberry, and ripe kiwi lend it to a range of light, summery dishes including salad, seafood, and mild Asian dishes. Sauvignon Blanc settles in comfortably at the table with notoriously difficult foods like goat cheese and asparagus. When combined with Sémillon (and perhaps some oak), it can be paired with more complex seafood and chicken dishes.

Sommelier Secret

Along with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc is the proud parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. That green bell pepper aroma that all three varieties share is no coincidence—it comes from a high concentration of pyrazines (an herbaceous aromatic compound) inherent to each member of the family.

NWWCH08PNR_2008 Item# 111034

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