Winemakers redefining Oregon Chardonnay

By on March 13, 2016

Willamette Valley Vineyards 2013 Vintage 40 Chardonnay, Willamette Valley, $35

willamette-valley-vineyards-vintage-40-chardonnay-2013-bottleJim Bernau first joined forces with pioneering winemaker/grower Bill Fuller in 1997, and since then, Willamette Valley Vineyards has expanded Fuller’s Tualatin Vineyard  into one of the state’s largest contiguous plantings at 170 acres. Fuller left California, where he’d been winemaker at iconic Louis Martini, in 1973, and Bernau recruited Fuller out of retirement for  small lot 40th anniversary projects of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. This commemorative Chardonnay shows exotic aromas of orange oil, gooseberry and lemongrass with hints of marzipan. Its presentation to the palate is bright and brisk with a steady stream of Bosc pear and citrusy flavors that pick up some notes of papaya, lavender and mint. That cleansing flowing of acidity brings to mind thoughts of a bowl of steamed mussels with fresh bread and Hazelnut Chicken Breasts with Dijon Yogurt Sauce, a recipe developed by one of the Pacific Northwest’s premier wine country chefs — the late John Sarich.

Rating: Recommended

Production: 200 cases

Alcohol: 12.3%

Winery website

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About Great Northwest Wine

Articles authored by Great Northwest Wine are co-authored by Eric Degerman and Andy Perdue. In most cases, these are wine reviews that are judged blind by the Great Northwest Wine tasting panel.

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