2008 Pinot Noir Reserve
We only make a reserve in years we consider unique and exceptional, blending wine from only the very best barrels from all five of our vineyards.
The 2008 Reserve is aging beautifully. Luscious black fruit and red fruit components remain surprisingly youthful, although the fruit characters have blended and melded with age. Structure is an important component of the Reserve, with great depth in its barrel toast components and a fruit intensity that make it an exemplary Oregon Pinot Noir.
According to Rob Verant, Elk Cove’s CFO “This is why wine is more interesting than beer – just call it awesome.”
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.
Our winemaking team considers barrels from all of our estate plantings to make our Reserve the very best Pinot Noir we can produce. A good portion of the 8 barrels we blend to create the Reserve typically comes from our esteemed Roosevelt Vineyard, with additional components from Mount Richmond and La Bohème Vineyards.
We only produce an Elk Cove Reserve Pinot Noir in exceptional vintages. Our Reserve is blended from the very best barrels in our entire cellar, selected by careful tasting trials performed by our winemaking team. About 80% of those barrels are new oak from the finest French coopers. Our Reserve is both big and structured, designed to improve with cellaring for 20+ years.
- Vine Age 8-23 years
- Yield 2 tons/acre
- Harvest Sugars 23.0-25.1 Brix
- pH 3.71
- Vatting Fermentation in small open top steel fermenters. 10 months in French oak.
- Cases Produced 198
93 Points “Bright ruby. Pungent, intensely spicy bouquet of raspberry and blackberry preserves, potpourri, wilted rose and cola…”
– Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar (July 1, 2010)
92 Points “Crisp in texture and tightly wound, with a strong mineral note running through the dark berry and licorice flavors…”
– Wine Spectator (August 18, 2010)
94 Points “Dark ruby in color, it proffers a super-expressive bouquet of pain grille, underbrush, wild berries, and exotic spice notes. Satin textured with dense, layered fruit bordering on opulent, this plush offering is incipiently complex. Give it another 3-4 years of cellaring and it will be singing like an operatic diva”
– Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate (October 31, 2010)