2023 Division Winemaking Co. – La Frontière, Sauvignon Blanc, Oregon.
The pure, energy filled and mineral driven pale gold Division-Villages “La Frontière” Sauvignon Blanc is joyous expression of the varietal, from what might be an unexpected place, but it certainly shows the promise of the grape in Oregon with bright gooseberry, lemon/lime and tangy white peach and quince fruit and steely/stony notes, sourgrass, herb and delicate leesy quality. This really reminds me of Pouilly-Fumé (Loire Valley) and feels exciting on the medium bodied palate, austere in the best way and more complex than you’d usually see at this price point, making it a great alternative to many generic domestic and imported versions of this grape. There’s a lot to like here, with this La Frontière, it goes great with food and is an interesting Summer sipper, it is sourced from all organic vineyards and made with this Portland based urban winery’s natural style winemaking, fitting nicely in their collection of wines. Cool fermented and aged in neutral vessels on the fine lees, nothing is hidden or heavy handed here, this is delightful stuff to enjoy over the next few years.

The Division La Frontiere is 100% Sauvignon Blanc by winemaker Kate Noris comes from two main vineyard sources that provide a perfect Ying and Yang balance and gives the wine a distinctive personality. Part one is a small certified organic vineyard on Jory, Yamhill & Woodburn soils in the Eola-Amity Hills, planted in in 2006, which that makes up about half of the “La Frontière” along with the certified organically farmed Allegre Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, planted to unique Fruilian clones, in the Columbia Gorge, making up, as the winery notes, the remaining half of this cuvée. Noris has done a brilliant job here, highlighting her talents and touch with this transparent and lively Sauvignon Blanc, a varietal they themselves were a bit uncertain of, but one that has really turned out delightful. The winery says, that there’s a fine line between the finest Sauvignon Blanc wines and well, not-so-good Sauvignon Blanc, and that they were skeptics too, but now they believe they have found magic in the Oregon terroir and its soils, which is mineral rich, especially in the volcanic Willamette Valley site they have. I’ve been a fan of Division for a few years now and I think Noris has upped the game, I recommend checking this winery out, this Sauvignon Blanc and the latest Pinot are delicious wines.
($26 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive

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