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Elk Cove Vineyards Clay Court Pinot Noir 2017 Red Wine

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Elk Cove Vineyards Clay Court Pinot Noir 2017 

Chehalem Mountains AVA, Willamette Valley, OR

92 pts. Wine Enthusiast: “Made from Pommard and Dijon vines set atop Parrett Mountain, this is a spicy wine with pinpoint flavors of mountain berries, backed with juicy citrus. A finesse wine, stylish and deep, the details remain in sharp focus through a mineral-backed finish.” – Paul Gregutt

FROM THE WINERY:

TASTING NOTES: Opens with bright aromas of candied plums and an edge of rosemary and sage. An intensely red-fruited wine, flavors of pie cherry and red currants lead into an orange peel grip with hints of salinity on the smooth finish.

VINEYARD: Clay Court sits atop a picturesque hillside in the Parrett Mountain zone of the Chehalem Mountains AVA. This 15 acre all-Pinot-Noir vineyard was planted in 2001 with the classic Pommard and modern Dijon 115 and 777 clones of Pinot Noir. Clay Court was purchased by Elk Cove in 2009 and is the home of founders Joe and Pat Campbell – and their beloved tennis court! With gentle east-facing slopes, dark red Jory clay soils, and a proven track-record for producing high-quality Pinot Noirs, Clay Court Vineyard was immediately a great addition to Elk Cove’s estate vineyards.

WINEMAKING: All of Elk Cove’s delicate Pinot Noir fruit undergoes the same gentle handling through our gravity flow system. This allows us to achieve the elegance, texture and luscious quality that are the hallmarks of exquisite Pinot Noir. Clay Court Pinot Noir fruit is fermented in small, temperature controlled steel tanks, hand punched down twice daily then aged for ten months in 33% new French oak. Our winemaking team then carefully blends the barrels most representative of the spicy flavors and concentrated red cherry fruit that characterizes this vineyard.

VINTAGE 2017 was a classic Oregon vintage with plenty of sunny days and refreshingly cool nights. It was also the first year since our wines were 100% estate grown, created entirely from grapes we own and farm. We now have full control as we care for our vineyards and soils for generations to come. “Estate Grown” is now proudly displayed on each of our labels. After three early harvests in a row, 2017 brought us back to what many consider “classic Oregon weather.” A wet, cool spring led to a late start to the growing season with an early June bloom. Dry, hot weather in July and August meant great ripening as we thinned clusters to protect quality. Worries of smoke taint during the Columbia Gorge fires proved unfounded in our area, but hazy skies slowed September ripening slightly. We began bringing in fruit in mid-September, but were interrupted by rain a few times in late September and mid-October. With 40+ vintages under our belts and hillside vineyards at diverse elevations we were able to choose the right windows to pick beautifully ripe fruit from each block. Sometimes this meant pulling long hours: in fact October 9th was our biggest day on record, with 110 tons landing on the crush-pad. Expect ripe tannins, fully developed flavors and classic cool climate freshness in these 2017 vintage wines.

VITICULTURE & ENOLOGY: Vine Age: 16 years

Harvest Sugars: 23.5 brix

Vatting: Fermentation in small open top steel fermentors. 10 months in French oak.

pH: 3.45, TA: 5.4

Alc: 13.5 v/v

Bottled July 2018

Cases Produced: 734

 

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