2018 Basalt Block Pinot Noir
McMinnville, Willamette Valley
Vineyard: Brittan Estate Vineyard
Maturation: 12 months in French oak, 18% new
The Basalt Block, a seven-acre south-facing bowl at the heart of our hillside vineyard, is planted primarily to Pinot noir selections 777 and Pommard. This part of the vineyard has the most exposure to the ancient, fractured marine basalts that underlie the entire property. Direct interaction between vine roots and base geology produces the truest expression of site: in our case, savory, mineral-driven, red-fruited wines with pronounced acidity.
The 2018 vintage started cool and wet in February and March, which led to a more “normal” budbreak in April. The season quickly accelerated and was warm and dry beginning in May. Summer brought very warm, dry weather through August, which put pressure on the vines and produced fruit of great depth and concentration. September was dry but more moderate and allowed the fruit to reach full maturity by the end of the month.
My Tasting Notes
Dark ruby red core. A med+ intensity in the nose of fresh red and black fruits and spices. Raspberry, cherry, sweet tobacco, baking and herbal spices. Good acidity and freshness. This is tight but unwound some in the glass. Big, muscular but chiseled on the palate. Decant.