Elk Cove’s Ultima is our definition of dessert; opulence in a bottle. Having long ago established a “cult-like” status, Riesling remains the cornerstone of our new blend, simply called Ultima. The Ultima is comprised each vintage of a selection of aromatic varietals consisting of a proprietary blend. While Riesling supplies the weight of this wine with fresh pear, apricot and honey notes, the supplemental varietals add beautiful delicate aromatics.
VINTAGE 2012 will go down as one of the finest in Oregon history in terms of quality of the raw materials. Mother Nature really smiled on us with not only a rain-free harvest season but perhaps more importantly with tiny berries and clusters. The small fruit allowed us to effortlessly and gently extract concentration and ripe tannins from the perfectly formed grapes.
According to owner/winemaker Adam Campbell “The wines from 2012 remind me and my folks of classic vintages like 1998 and 1994. Small clusters and berries give us an amazing skin-to-juice ratio, allowing us to be incredibly gentle through fermentation and still come up with powerful concentration and ripeness of fruit.”
Early reviews of the 2012 vintage use descriptors like “Stunning”, “Amazing” & “Epic” making Oregon winemakers giddy that 2012 could go down as the best vintage in our 50 year winemaking history.
To create Ultima, we choose the most perfectly ripe, aromatic grapes fruit from our estate vineyards, primarily Riesling. We freeze the fruit prior to pressing to emulate the ice-wines produced in regions where fruit freezes on the vine.
To produce the Ultima, we press the grapes while frozen, which leaves a portion of the water from the grapes behind. This concentrates the fruit’s sweetness as well as all other flavors and aromatic compounds. The juice is then slow fermented in chilled tanks to protect the lovely honey and floral qualities that make Ultima a prized dessert wine.
Viticultural & Enological Data
- Vine Age 5-31 years
- Yield 4 tons/acre
- Harvest Sugars 35 brix
- pH 3.31
- Vatting Whole-cluster pressed frozen grapes cold fermented in small stainless steel tanks.
- Cases Produced 375