|The 2014 Pinot Noir Reserve is a barrel selection from various Elk Cove's vineyards, and this year it constitutes eight barrels, six of which are new. It has an intense bouquet with red and black fruit, touches of undergrowth and wilted violet petals that are very well defined. The palate is medium-bodied with supple red and black fruit, the oak neatly embroidered into the fruit, very smooth in texture with a touch of allspice and clove towards the sustained finish. It is tightly coiled at the moment, but I am sure it will age into a very serious Pinot Noir, even if it does come with a fairly hefty price tag.
Yeah...I like Elk Cove. I like the cut of their jib. These are examples of Oregon fermented grape juice that exude precision, freshness, intensity and for want of a better word, sheer drinkability. These are the kind of wines that I sample professionally but leave thinking how much I would just like to abscond with them and share them with friends. Winemaker Adam Campbell is a dab hand at not just Pinot Noir but also white varieties, in particular producing two very worthy Chardonnay and Rieslings from the 2014 vintage. The former is a welcome return for the grape variety, following their acquisition of four acres of 12-year-old vine in the Goodrich Vineyard. His Pinot Noirs were extremely consistent across the entire range, a winemaker who frankly did not seem to let the ball slip once throughout the season. Their 2014 Pinot Noir Reserve will need some bottle age, but will surely evolve into one of the standouts of a very good growing season, while the 2014 La Bohème Pinot Noir and Five Mountain Pinot Noir are both exquisite expressions of the grape variety that help put Oregon on the world stage. This was certainly one of my most impressive tastings during my visit: a combination of old vine stock and careful winemaking by a skillful winemaker.