WillaKenzie Estate Pierre Leon Pinot Noir 2017
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
A barrel sample, the 2017 Pinot Noir Pierre Leon is pale ruby-purple in color with a nose of blueberry, black cherry and black berries with notions of tobacco, soil and herbs framed by classy new oak. Medium-bodied, it's lively and vibrant in the mouth, with wonderful sweet dark fruits, layers of exotic spice and savory notes. It has firm, powerful, grainy tannins and mouthwatering acidity carrying the very long, layered finish. This is very promising. To be bottled in May of 2019. 400 cases are expected to be produced. Barrel Sample: 92-94
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.
Yamhill-Carlton, characterized by pastoral, rolling hills composed of shallow, quick-draining, ancient marine soil, is ideal for Pinot noir and other cool-climate-loving varieties. It is in the rain shadow of the Coast Range to its west, whose highest point climbs to an altitude of 3,500 feet. Yamhill-Carlton is actually surrounded by mountains on three sides: Chehalem Mountains to the north, the Dundee Hills to the east and the western Coast Range to its west, which, when it lets Pacific air through, serves to cool the region.
Vineyards grow on the ridges surrounding the two small communities of Yamhill and Carlton and cover about 1,200 acres of this 60,000 acre region, which roughly makes a horse-shoe shape on a map.