2014 Five Mountain
A floral nose of violets and rose petal leads into rich tenors of leather and baking chocolate. Luscious and fruit forward, the palate sings with red raspberries, cranberries and pie-cherries while structured tannins then soften into a lingering, juicy finish.
Vintage 2014 in Oregon may be remembered as the vintage of a lifetime; one of those rare vintages, reminiscent of 1988 and 2002, when you have high quality and high quantity simultaneously. The tone for the season was set at bud break, which averaged two weeks early and held on through harvest. Growing conditions were mostly dry and warmer than normal resulting in a large number of small clusters that ripened evenly over the course of the summer, giving us wines that show as fruit focused, quite concentrated and with amazing freshness.
This year’s warmer than average nights and moderate days created the ideal conditions that led to a faster rate of ripening due to less stress on the vines. This allowed the fruit to stay in harmony. In addition, notes Winemaker, Adam Campbell, “the amazing summer weather led to the lowest disease pressure I have ever seen, creating a harvest that was the stuff dreams are made of – little rain, gorgeous fruit, and an easy tempo making for a relaxed and delightful crush”. These prolonged warm days and moderately cool nights with low heat stress led to ideal ripening.
Fruit quality, harmony and balance were key factors in the 2014 growing season. As fruit came in with incredible evenness and extraordinary concentration, 2014 will likely be a show stopping vintage. We remain true to our goals as wine growers – looking to capture the beautiful, complex flavors that are the signature of Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and other cool-climate varietals.
Elk Cove Vineyards purchased Five Mountain Vineyard in 2005 after leasing the site for several years. Previously it was exclusively used in our Willamette Valley blend, but after taking full control of the vineyard we have found certain lots worthy of Single Vineyard status.
This historic vineyard was planted in 1978 by the Ponzi family. The original 4.2 acres of old vines are comprised of Pommard clone and the entire vineyard is set on a steep southeast slope in the Chehalem Mountains AVA, overlooking “five mountains” in the Cascade Range most widely seen from the Willamette Valley. This vineyard was an important element in the early Ponzi Reserve Pinots and has also been a Single Vineyard selection from a number of premier Oregon wineries over the years.
Five Mountain is now sustainably farmed by Elk Cove Vineyards and comprises a total of 30 acres including the original old vine Pommard Pinot Noir, younger Dijon Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Gewurztraminer and Riesling.
All of Elk Cove’s delicate Pinot Noir fruit undergoes the same gentle handling through our gravity flow system. This allows us to achieve the elegance, texture and luscious quality that are the hallmarks of exquisite Pinot Noir.
Fruit from Five Mountain is fermented in small, temperature controlled steel tanks, hand punched down twice daily, and barreled in 40% new French oak barrels. After 10 months of aging, only the barrels that are most representative of the Five Mountain profile are carefully blended to create a big, luscious Oregon Pinot Noir.
- Vine Age 17-36
- Harvest Sugars 23.8
- pH 3.53
- Vatting 10 months in 50% new French Oak
- Cases Produced 770
“Sleek and expressive, this is complex, with orange peel and tea leaf overtones to the cherry and raspberry flavors…”
– Wine Spectator (online, 2016)
“extremely well-focused. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp acidity, real tension and vigor with fine tannin, dark cherry and red plum fruit leading to a nicely poised, Volnay-like finish that is pure class…”
– Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate (June 29, 2016)
“Very tight young wine with soft and silky tannins and plenty of plums, light cedar and toffee flavors. Medium body and a long finish…”
– JamesSuckling.com (November 2, 2016)