There is a quiet kind of excitement in the Willamette Valley after harvest 2008. Phrases and clichés keep rolling on such as classic cool climate, vintage conditions that are only dreamt of, potential to show the best of what Oregon has to offer. Add to this, repeated references to perhaps one of Oregon’s best vintages, 1999 and understandably many in the valley are smiling. Oregon’s 2008 growing season started late, with bud break on average ten days to two weeks behind schedule and followed with a relatively cool growing season. Thoughts of the recent wet and cool harvest of 2007 had many aggressively thin vineyards to concentrate fruit and speed up ripening and ward off disease pressure. Yet as in 1999, a beautiful Oregon autumn saved the day! Fall was spectacular with sunny days and cold nights, producing the tiny berries and small clusters not seen since the 1994 and 1998 vintages, laying the foundation to produce extraordinary wines.
We planted La Bohème Vineyard in 1985 by selecting the very best vines from our original Estate Pommard plantings. Pat and Joe Campbell named the vineyard after the family who sold them the property – and their favorite Puccini opera. This picturesque vineyard overlooks the winery and the coast range mountains and rises to 800 feet, making it one of the highest elevation vineyard sites in the Willamette Valley. La Bohème was planted using cuttings from vines selected for small cluster size and intense flavors, hallmarks of the world’s finest Pinot Noirs. We prune and cluster-thin La Bohème heavily to limit yields and to maximize ripening and flavor concentration.
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 the La Bohème vineyard is fermented in small, temperature controlled steel tanks, hand punched down twice daily then aged for ten months in 50% new French oak. Our winemaking team then selects the very best barrels to represent the silky, lush flavor profile that exemplifies La Bohème pinot noir.
- Vine Age 23 years
- Yield 1.6 tons/acre
- Harvest Sugars 24 Brix
- pH 3.63
- Vatting Fermentation in small open top steel fermenters. 10 months in French oak.
- Cases Produced 513
91 Points “Light on its feet, swirling its ripe blueberry, currant and mineral flavors…”
– Wine Spectator (August 18, 2010)
91 Points “…Open-knit red fruit flavors are nicely concentrated and seamless, with a subtle note of burnt orange adding a tangy edge…”
– Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar (July 1, 2010)
“…It is a mouth-filling, expansive effort with layers of savory fruit, impeccable balance, and a fruit-filled finish…”
– Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate (October 31, 2010)