2014 La Bohème
“blackberry and wild hedgerow, tightly wound at the moment. The palate is medium-bodied with grippy tannin, the 15% whole cluster lending a subtly forest floor note, good density in the mouth with firm backbone on the finish…”
– Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate (June 29, 2016)
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.
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.
Viticultural & Enological Data
- Vine Age 14-29 years
- Harvest Sugars 23.8 brix
- pH 3.58
- Vatting Fermentation in small open top steel fermentors. 10 months in 50% new French Oak
- Cases Produced 759