2021 Willamette Valley Chardonnay
In 2021, we honed in on two vineyards, Fern Creek and Giving Tree, situated in the newly established Mount Pisgah AVA (as of July 2022). Mount Pisgah AVA is located southwest of Eola-Amity Hills AVA and Salem, the state capital. The distinct climate here is defined by the Willamette River which has a warming effect, the cooling Van Duzer Corridor winds and the rain shadow of nearby Laurel Mountain. Mount Pisgah was formed 65 million years ago as a volcano on the floor of an inland sea and it has shallow soils that are rich with marine sediment..
Planted by the viticulture team at Atlas in 2015, Giving Tree is a LIVE-certified site in the foothills of the Coast Range. The vines are southwest facing on a large, gradual slope of well-drained Bellpine marine sedimentary soils. The vineyard is high-density plantings of classic Dijon clones (76 and 95) with Burgundy spacing where the persistant cool winds encourage a long growing season.
Also established and farmed by Atlas Vineyard Management, Fern Creek is about ten miles from Giving Tree, just a stone’s throw from the famed Freedom Hill Vineyard. This LIVE-certified site planted to an old Burgundy clone of Chardonnay - 548, which is known for naturally low yields and tiny clusters. The vineyards are east-facing on steep, rocky slopes of volcanic Jory soils.
Native yeast fermentation in a combination of oak and stainless steel followed by partial malolactic conversion. 10 months aging in tank and barrel in cluding 10% new Damy, Mercurey and Seguin Moreau Icone Blanc barrels
This wine is all about precise acidity without compromising texture, length, or structure – think Grand Cru Chablis (really). Bright lemon/lime drives the profile with marzipan and marigold notes that add intriguing complexity and weight.
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