LCBO Vintages Release
A Pinot Noir made with fruit from Oregon’s Umpqua and Willamette Valleys. The landscape here, on the western edge of the state, was shaped by the collision of three mountain ranges: The Klamath, the Cascade, and the Coastal. The soil is fertile and rich due to recurring ice-age floods that swept topsoil from Montana down the Columbia River gorge. Layers of sediment were deposited as the waters subsided, and the resulting network of hills and valleys contains some 150 different soil types.
After a cold, damp winter, the grapes saw early spring heat that pushed bud break up a few weeks ahead of average. A heatspike around flowering caused potential yields to be reduced but would ultimately create small berries and loose clusters. The mild summer to fall temperatures allowed for great flavor development and concentration in the grapes. A historically early harvest resulted in picking of the sparkling wine grapes in early August, and before the close of the month, picking pinot noir from warmer sites in the Willamette Valley. Fruit from southern Oregon vineyards came in the first half of September with the cooler Willamette Valley grapes wrapping up by mid-October. As a result, the 2016 Underwood Pinot Noir expresses good concentration and intensity and has retained amazing freshness and acidity.
Underwood’s Pinot Noir is fermented in stainless steel tanks, then aged for eight months, 10% in new French oak. The wine is generous and bright, with raspberry, black plum, and violet on the palate and an underlying earthy, savoury bass note.