2008 Westrey "Oracle Vineyard" Dundee Hills Pinot Noir

SKU #1054282

91(+?) points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Vivid red. Sexy aromas of cherry-cola, black raspberry and spicecake, with a suave floral quality gaining strength with air. Palate-coating flavors of musky cherry and dark berries become brighter and smokier on the back end, shading to spicy red and dark berry notes. The tannins are velvety. This juicy midweight benefits significantly from air and should be even better with a few more years of bottle age." (Jul/Aug 10) Frank Goretta planted seven acres of the Oracle Vineyard, located in the Dundee Hills AVA in 1977. The vines were planted on their own roots, rather than on phylloxera-resistant rootstock which was unavailable at the time. Westrey began buying fruit in 1994, but in 1997, the farm was sold to a horse rancher who had no interest in growing grapes. The trellis was removed, the vines were cut down, and the soil was plowed. In the autumn of 2000, Westrey purchased the property, believing it was unplanted land, albeit a proven plot for excellent grapes. The following spring, as they prepared the soil for planting, Amy and David noticed rows of bushes emerging where the old plantings had been. The root structures of the vines had survived, and after several vintages of careful pruning and training, the original vineyard is back in production. The original planting benefits from their massive 40-year-old root structure and yield grapes of truly exceptional balance and length.

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Price: $24.99
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Staff Image By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/17/2010 | Send Email
This is special, natural Oregon Pinot at a fantastic price. On the nose it is a crazy basket from the garden; red fruits of all types, a touch of celery and even some earth. On the palate it is concentrated with presence on the mid palate that I usually associate more with premier cru Burgundy rather than $25 Oregon Pinot Noir. The fruit flavors are all Oregon and show off the clean, extroverted style that has made so many friends over the years. On the finish, the wine is firm and dry, showing the potential for a good many years of improvement. I need to get some in my cellar!
Top Value! Drink from 2010 to 2018

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Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- Highly touted for its Pinot Noirs, Oregon is part of the up-and-coming winemaking industry in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. Most of Oregon is directly affected by the climate coming off of the Pacific Ocean, giving it mild winters and wet summers. This makes it a difficult place to ripen grapes, but some say that the harder grapes have to struggle, the more complex they will turn out to be. Chardonnay and Pinot Gris are two important and successful grapes grown in Oregon.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5