2019 Five Mountain
Lush aromas of huckleberry, licorice and violet introduce this pretty wine. Generous strawberry on the palate is complemented by grainy tannins with flavors of bay leaf, cocoa and black tea.
“A pretty nose of redcurrants, plums, sour cherries, dried herbs and stones. It’s medium-bodied with fine tannins and fresh acidity. Supple and velvety with spicy character. Succulent finish. Drink or hold.”
– James Suckling (July, 2021)
VINTAGE 2019 required experience and courage. After 45 years, we often say there isn’t a harvest we haven’t seen, but 2019 was an odd one. After a warm May and a healthy, early fruit-set, the summer ended cool with no threat of the sunburn or hazy, smoky skies seen in recent years. We expected to pick in early September, but weeks of unseasonably cool weather took us by surprise. Rather rushing to pick too early, we waited patiently for concentrations and sugar levels to rise, confident that our vineyard practices would protect the fruit.
According to Winemaker/Owner Adam Campbell “You pick your moments. If you’re 100% estate grown and you have impeccable timing – you can grow fantastic fruit in any year. It took months of preparation in the vineyard, and some very long days during crush, but we had a great crew in 2019 and managed to get sugar levels right where we want them.”
Our goal is a minimum 100 days from bloom to harvest; 2019 saw hang times as long as 125 days in some blocks. Expect wines with a big ripe core of concentrated fruit and a bright, fresh profile.
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 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 rich, earthy Oregon Pinot Noir.
Viticultural & Enological Data
- Vine Age 12-42
- Harvest Sugars 23.5 brix
- pH 3.62
- Vatting 10 months in 20% new French Oak
- Cases Produced 501