2019 Colene Clemens Dopp Creek Pinot Noir
2019 Colene Clemens Dopp Creek Pinot Noir, From Chehalem Mountains,Willamette Valley,Oregon.
“The 2019 Dopp Creek opens with pretty aromas of rich red fruit and savory herbs, which carry through on the palate. The wine is clean, balanced, and well-structured with a core of bright fruit and a round, supple mouthfeel. It finishes with a hint of pomegranate, rosemary, and warm spice. This wine drinks beautifully now, and will age gracefully over the next five to eight years.” Winemaker
Colene Clemens if owned by Joe and Vicki Stary, natives of the Willamette Valley. They built a business and fell in love with wine, especially Pinot and decided to follow their dream. With knowledge and access to the finest of Willamette, they set out on a goal of making the absolute best Pinot Noir that they could. They hired Stephen Goff to helm the winemaking team, a native of Pennsylvania who got the wine bug after moving to San Francisco. He worked harvest at Carneros Creek, studied viticulture at Fresno State, and then landed the assistant winemaker job at the legendary Beaux Freres. He worked there for 6 vintages before joining Colene Clemens in 2008. Pinot lovers, this is a tremendous buy and shows the true upside potential of Oregon. I was thoroughly impressed.
The overall character of the wine seems to be dominated by a solid, dense core of dark red to black fruits with a firmer underlying tannic structure compared to previous years. While more pronounced tannins can sometimes be of concern, we feel that the intensity and depth of the fruit is ample and deep enough to balance them out and also provide the potential for longer term aging. While many will enjoy these wines in the near term, a little patience will reward you even more.
Thin-skinned, finicky and temperamental, Pinot Noir is also one of the most rewarding grapes to grow and remains a labor of love for some of the greatest vignerons in Burgundy. Fairly adaptable but highly reflective of the environment in which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate and requires low yields to achieve high quality. Outside of France, outstanding examples come from in Oregon, California and throughout specific locations in wine-producing world. Somm Secret—André Tchelistcheff, California’s most influential post-Prohibition winemaker decidedly stayed away from the grape, claiming “God made Cabernet. The Devil made Pinot Noir.”
Located in the western end of Dopp Road where the Chehalem Mountains converge with Ribbon Ridge, this 122-acre property was acquired in 2005 and first planted in 2006. Starting at 350ft of elevation and rising to 650ft, this rocky south facing hillside is a mix sedimentary and volcanic soils, predominantly Wellsdale and Witzel. Current plantings now total 40 acres divided up among 5 different clones of Pinot Noir, 3 Dijon as well as Pommard and Wadensvil.
Colene Clemens farming practices can best be described as sustainable, utilizing organic methods whenever possible.They put a heavy influence on soil work and incorporate a lot of “green” manure as well as the production and application of their own compost.