Wine Advocate 91 points - The 2012 Pinot Noir Dundee Hills Cuvee comes from five vineyard sources, including Bella Vinda and La Colina. Picked October 11-18, 100% destemmed and matured for 20 months in oak barriques, it has a focused and vibrant bouquet with clean redcurrant and black plum fruit, with just a slight tinny quality coming through. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy red berry fruit, understated on the entry, but very nicely balanced with a focused and elegant, feminine finish. There is a sense of suaveness about this Pinot Noir that ticks all the boxes.
Wine Enthusiast 92 points - Sourced from several different Dundee Hills vineyards, this wraps its black cherry fruit in tart acids, chalky minerals, and a hint of iron. Substantial, muscular and stiff out of the bottle, it will blossom with further bottle age. It’s already a sturdy, expressive, impressive wine with deep flavors of fruit, earth and rock.
Wine Spectator 88 points - Taut, crisp and focused, with generous blackberry and currant flavors on a modest frame, hinting at smoke and spice as the finish lingers. Best from 2016 through 2020. 943 cases made.
(Jun 15 2015)
This cuvée is a blend of selected barrels from several excellent vineyard sites in the red Jory clay of the Dundee Hills AVA. It shows the depth and power that are typical of this area, and makes a very interesting comparison to the "Nuages” cuvée from the rockier soil of the Chehalem Mountains AVA.
|The just-completed J. Christopher winery is located in Oregon’s Northern Willamette Valley, in the Chehalem Mountains AVA. It is a small winery that specializes in Pinot Noir made using the traditional methods of Burgundy. The winery is also one of the few in Oregon to produce Sauvignon Blanc, modeled after the great wines of Sancerre. Owner Jay Somers has been making wine in Oregon for more than 15 years, and established the J. Christopher brand in 1996. Jay’s wines are hand-crafted in small lots and are sourced from some of the best vineyards in Oregon.
The philosophy at J. Christopher is to produce wines in an Old World style that emphasizes focus, length and balance. As Jay puts it, “We do not make fruit bombs. We want wines that have a fine balance of fruit, acidity and texture. We want wines that give you more than just a big mid-palate blast - wines that are complete.” The key to this, Jay firmly believes, is patient winemaking - it is vital not to rush things and allow the wines to develop naturally. One important example: Jay would never use cultured yeasts to induce malolactic fermentation in his Pinot Noir. This is a New World techique done to facilitate earlier bottling, but Jay feels it is damaging to the wine’s texture and balance. He wants the wines to evolve at their own pace, with a minimum of intervention.