Someone explain this labeling: La Creole Vineyard is a blend of 96% Feltz Vineyard and 4% Madrona Vineyard? No matter the name, it smells good, boasting plenty of smoky and woodsy aromas. The flavors are immature, almost grapey still, with some unintegrated vanilla and toast from oak, and fine tannins on the finish. Needs some time; give it a couple of years’ rest…
The winery’s reserve Pinot is a substantial wine that clearly stands apart from its well-made budget bottle. (It should also be noted that, to the winery’s credit, their reserve costs about what most Oregon budget bottles go for). This is vertically structured with mixed red fruits and nicely detailed whiffs and streaks of bark, earth, pepper and iron filings. It…
Here is a big, forward, friendly fruit bomb, which hits you with bold, lemon/apple fruit flavors and a generous amount of toasty, buttery oak. There’s nothing complex here, but it’s all in scale, big-boned, user-friendly and altogether quite likeable. Best Buy. —P.G.
This has a strong floral component, like body powder, but it is a substantial, meaty wine, with ripe pear and white peach flavors. Intense and focused in the midpalate, it gets a bit hot on the finish.
Here’s a real tropical fruit salad of a Chardonnay, ripe and lightly toasty and simply loaded with rich fruit flavor. The only off notes are some slightly bitter phenolics, but the big, juicy fruit more than compensates, especially as it drives through a long and powerful finish.
The reserve Chardonnay from Eola Hills gets an extra year in bottle, and it has a more elegant, vertical structure, with the fruit framed in toasty oak flavors and some tarragon spice. It’s persistent as well; the flavors seem to gather strength in the midpalate and continue through a strong and moderately complex finish.