Grapelive Wine of the Week
By Kerry Winslow
2008 De Ponte Cellars Pinot Noir “Dundee Hills” Estate, Willamette Valley, Oregon.
I visited the winery back in 2008 and left feeling this was a winery to watch, and this wine proved it to me. I fell in love with their 2006 Estate and had my mind blown by their 2004 Reserve, and now I’m falling all over myself for this vintage! This wine has all the structure and class that makes Burgundy so wonderful and it has Dundee terroir and new world fruit richness all bundled together in perfect harmony. The color is dark, but with a hint of cloudiness, maybe unfiltered with a vibrant strawberry hue under the more garnet core. The nose is still developing with pretty floral and mineral tones coming forward while hints of tea and dried rose petals linger in the background along with subtle smoke and wood notes. The palate is full of vigor and drive, but never is anything but elegant and focused with layers of black cherry, blackberry, plum and tangy currant fruits, leaving touches of truffle, lavender and spice to keep you interested. The wine expands in the mouth with great detail and sublime balance, with a long finish that has just the right amount of creamy vanilla from the French oak. Look for this beauty just to get better for the next 3-5 years and has the right levels of acidity and fruit to go 10 years I should think. This is a fine and textured Pinot Noir that has me hooked, and I am going to be sure I put some away.
($38 Est.) 95 Points, grapelive