2019 Ovum Wines, Old Love, White Wine, Oregon.
The Ovum Old Love dry white wine is a blend of grapes that sing in the glass with a range of heady and perfumed scents along with a brisk salty palate that will remind people of the beautiful and textural mixed varietal Alsatian wines of Marcel Deiss, Marc Tempe and Albert Boxler’s Edelzwicker Réserve, which is a different blend every year, like Ovum’s Old Love. The Old Love is about 45% Riesling, 35% Gewürztraminer, 10% Pinot Blanc and 10% (Dry) Muscat, though maybe 1% is other varietals depending on the year and what is co-planted in the vineyards, which are located throughout Oregon on a unique combination of soils, it is certainly one of the most eccentric of the state’s white wines and the better for it. The 2019 Old Love is fresh and lively with green apple, white peach, tangerine and dried apricot fruits on the lithe and crystalline palate, which is racy, saline and mineral laced with a bracing kick of acidity and showing hints of wet stone, ginger, rosewater and wild herbs. This white gives quite a rush to the senses and has a feeling of grip to it with crisp extract lingering well on in the aftertaste, very impressive and a great wine with food, in particular white fish, poultry, light pork dishes and even fresh briny oysters. The straw and light golden Old Love white keeps you guess throughout the glass, but drinks impeccably well balanced and rewarding without any obvious varietal domination taking charge, it truly is a wine that is better because of the sum of all parts, consider me intrigued! I am looking foward to exploring the rest of the Ovum lineup and the new vintages that have just now been released.
Ovum Wines, which was founded in 2011 by Ksenija Kostic House, the winemaker and her husband John House, is a label dedicated to showcasing vineyard sites and vintage through white wines, like this Old Love white wine. Ovum is solely committed to the production of these white wines, which mainly consist of aromatic varietals, including Riesling, Gewurztraminer, and Muscat that are fermented with native yeasts and aged in a combination of Amphora, neutral barrels of acacia wood and French oak, as well as partially in cement egg and some larger format Austrian casks. The Big Salt white, a different Ovum bottling, sees some extra skin contact and is fermented in separate lots, while this Old Love looks to be a co-ferment with minimum skin contact, while the Ovum Big Salt sees those separate ferments with extra skin contact. The Old Love is from vineyard sites, at least 10 different organic and sustainable vineyards that are all over 30 years old and set on a range of volcanic ash, basalt, marine sediment, alluvial, serpentine soils, with altitudes between 250 ft to over a 1,000 ft and with a collection of AVA’s from the Rogue to the Columbia Gorge, as well as the Dundee Hills in the Willamette Valley. Ksenija, I believe, for this Old Love white, co-fermented the different grapes, which saw a cold direct press into stainless steel for a natural yeast fermentation, or Inox, before seeing a 60 day elevage with 40% staying in tank, with 60% moving into Amphora, Austrian (oak) ovals, neutral French oak and Cement Egg for an extended 6 months before bottling. I’d been hearing the buzz about these Ovum wines and I’m thrilled to have finally opened one and I will without question get many more, especially at the prices, which seem insanely low for the quality!
($24 Est.) 93 Points, grapelive