Dobbes Family Estate

2008 Pinot Noir

Skipper’s Cuvee

$38.00 a bottle

So off to my second winery stop on my Oregon Pinot venture in the Willamette Valley. Another winery that came highly recommended was Dobbes Family Estate in Dundee Oregon. I was very impressed with the winery and their staff. Dobbes Winery grounds were very pretty, even featuring a beautiful Zen garden with a small flowing creek. Jessica behind the tasting bar was over the top in welcoming me and extremely informative. She definitely wanted to make sure I tried everything. I tasted a lot of great wines in their winery that afternoon but I found this 08 Skipper’s Cuvee Pinot pretty incredible. Skipper’s Cuvee is a blend of Pinot Noir grapes that come from the Rogue Valley and spend ten months in french oak. I found this Pinot rich with fruit, very smooth, with a velvety finish. Skipper’s Cuvee is extremely fragrant with huge aromas of fruit. Scents of strong black cherry and spice with a hint of cinnamon. Tasting first strong cherry, light raspberry, and cola. Finishing with a splash of oak, making this blend perfect. Out of all my favorite Pinots on my trip this Skipper’s Cuvee had the biggest tasting fruit. Oregon Pinots again shocking me because I have only ever been a fan of hearty earthy Pinots from the Russian River Valley. My second stop that day was yet another great success in finding another great Oregon Pinot. Off to my third stop on my list.

Domaine Serene

2007 Pinot Noir

Dundee Hills

$75.00 a bottle

The third winery stop for Pinot that afternoon was definitely the fanciest winery I visited in Oregon on my trip. Domaine Serene rests high on a hillside over looking the Valley. The winery and its views were pretty breathtaking. I was lucky enough that day to have a view with a little sun. A roaring fire welcomed me in the tasting room when I arrived. This winery was pretty over the top, so was one Pinot there that I fell in love with.
This 2007 Domain Serene “Fleur de Lis” Pinot Noir comes from the Evenstand Estate Vineyard which rests atop Dundee Hills, Oregon. Evenstand Estate Vineyard is 4 acres of Pinot Noir grapes that rests at an elevation of 720-740 feet. This Pinot is extremely elegant and has the longest finish of all the Pinots I tried on my trip. A very structured, silky, and smooth Pinot. Aromas of musty dark cherry and leather. Tasting light on fruit with slight cherry and spice but finishing with a creamy mushroom earthiness that definitely lingers. This Pinot has an awesome creamy finish by far my favorite part of this wine. I was now three for three on my list of Oregon Pinot stops. Off to winery four.

Archery Summit

2007 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir

Premier Cuvee

$48.00 a bottle

My fourth stop that day in the Willamette Valley was at Archery Summit Winery. This winery also came highly recommended to me. This winery calls themselves the “Rolls-Royce” of Oregon Pinot Noir, of coarse making me very curious if they would live up to their name. Again I was very impressed with the winery and their staff. Amber behind the tasting bar was extremely welcoming and made sure I tried everything. Really there was not a Pinot there I didn’t like! Out of all their great Pinots, their Pinot blend, 07 Premier Cuvee was my favorite. This Premier Cuvee is a blend of 100% Pinot Noir, is made from their oldest vines from their Estate Vineyard and aged 10 months in French oak. The aromas of this wine are of dark cherry, dried apricots, and mushroom. First tasting very light fruit of smokey cherry and cigar. Then finishing with light cream and spice. This 07 Premier Cuvee is full of flavors. I stopped at a few other wineries that day and tasted more Pinots but I decided this Archery Summit Pinot was my favorite that day. Nothing else that Friday afternoon topped it for me. This was the most structured and complex Pinot I had that Friday afternoon. With my first day of tasting Pinot on my trip done, I was extremely impressed with Oregon Pinots. This left me very excited to see what my Saturday tasting had in store for me. Only two more Pinot stops to make the next day, Anam Cara and Cana’s Feast. To be continued.................

The Four Graces

Willamette Valley

08 Pinot Noir

$29.00 a bottle

I am very proud to say I was able to venture away from California wine country to Oregon wine country and taste some great Oregon Pinots! I am a huge Russian River Valley Pinot Noir fan but was told by a number of my wine friends that I haven’t tasted the best Pinot until I’ve tasted Oregon Pinot. Of coarse this sparked my curiosity and I had to plan a trip to taste. I began my trip in Portland, Oregon which was an incredible fun city in itself. I fell in love with it actually, I definitely did not have enough time there. Of course when I landed that March afternoon there was no rain and the sun was shinning which I was told is a rarity. So the next morning I headed to the Willamette Valley to start my Pinot discoveries. First stop on my lengthy list was The Four Graces in Dundee, Oregon. This winery came highly recommended by several of my wine friends as a must stop. A very cute country cottage winery with an incredibly friendly man named Jason was pouring behind the bar. Definitely a great place to start my trip tasting. Lets just say I left with a case. Out of all the Pinots I tasted in Oregon this Pinot is the closest to the Russian River Valley style, hence probably why I liked it so much. I was really expecting for Oregon Pinots to be huge fruit bombs but was pleasantly surprised when they weren’t. The aromas of this Four Graces 08 Pinot are of slight floral, ceder, and dark fruits. First tasting of strong black cherry, other dark fruits and spice. Then having a earthy soil finish, very light and smooth. This Pinot is definitely elegant yet earthy reminding me of the Russian River Valley Pinot I love so much. With my first winery stop turning out as great as it did I couldn’t wait to visit the rest on my list. My next blog will be on my second winery stop in the Willamette Valley. To be continued..................