Pinot Noir: An Introduction
Pinot Noir is a thin-skinned, tempermental grape variety that prefers cool climates but is grown in many parts of the world. Some ofthe most famous Pinot Noir is known throughout the world as Burgundy. Famous estates like Domainede la Romanee-Conti (DRC)with their wines of Romanee Conti, Richebourg, and Echezeaux are highly praised and collectible, not to mention expensive. Great Pinot Noir also comes from Canada, USA, New Zealand, Italy, and Australia. Perhaps some of the best new world Pinot Noir is grown in Oregon, in the USA.
Oregon lies in the Pacific Northwest, north of California and south of Washington. The climate here is mild year-round, with cool, wet winters and warm, dry summers, making it suitable for growing Pinot Noir. The Willamette Valley is a large and varied region, spanning more than 100 miles along the Willamette River and buffered by mountain ranges to the east and west. One of the sub-zones, the Eol-Amity, contains soils of predominantly volcanic basalt from ancient lava flows, combined with marine sedimentary rocks and/or alluvial deposits. These generally much shallower and rockier sets of well-drained soils produce small grapes with great concentration. Not as "fruit-bomby" as their California neighbours, and perhaps not showing the earthiness of Burgundy, but the best of both: great quality at exceptional value.
Evesham Wood was founded by Russ Raney in 1986 after training with the legendary Henri Jayer in Vosne-Romanee. The wines are based on the idea that small is beautiful. The estate vineyard is called "Le Puits Sec", French for "the dry well", one of which is in the vineyard. The vineyard itself has a gently sloping east-facing aspect, nestled on the eastern side of the Eola-Amity Hills ridge. The soils are shallow volcanic basalt. This area has proven to have one of Oregon's best micro-climates, leading to wines of great intensity and complexity. "Le Puits Sec" Pinot Noir 2018
Underlying tension and power are the hallmarks of Le Puits Sec. Concentrated dark fruits, spice, and earth nuances are framed by fine structure. An orchestra of flavours that play together in perfect harmony. Try with grilled fish with a light lemon sauce, pasta dishes with mushrooms, or a fresh salad with arugula, strawberries, mushrooms, and a light balsamic dressing.
After two decades of building the Evesham Wood operation, Russ began working closely with star winemaker Erin Nuccio. In her, he saw he opportunity to work with someone who would continue the legacy and make wine using the same philosophies. In 2000, the vineyard obtained organic certification for the Le Puits Sec, and in 2010, Erin purchased the winery and vineyard.