Illahe Vineyards’ 2021 Pinot Noir is the product of a nearly perfect vintage. The crew had a great fall and smooth native fermentations, resulting in a slightly lower-than-normal yield. Fruit from Ash Creek and new fruit from Pauline Vineyard near Monmouth were added, some of which went into the higher blends. The Willamette Valley is 10% new oak this vintage, and fermentation temperatures were kept low to create a light, classic pinot with a strong acid backbone.
The tasting notes reveal a bouquet of cherry, strawberry, and plum, with notes of cola, graham cracker, and black tea. Other intriguing notes can be found in the corners of the palate, including nectarine, white pepper, rosemary, and pea pod. This Pinot Noir was made with 25% whole clusters.
In terms of technical details, 8,900 cases were produced with FSO2 of 28 ppm, a pH of 3.44, and a titratable acidity of 6.65. The alcohol content is 13.6%. The Pinot Noir was aged for 10 months in 10% new French oak barrels and underwent 100% native fermentation. The grapes were harvested from shallow sedimentary clay soil with an elevation of 250-450ft. The harvest date was from 9/14 to 10/16, and the AVA is Willamette Valley. This Pinot Noir is made up of 89% Illahe Vineyards, 5% Goshie, 4% Cherry Hill, 1% Erratic Oaks, and 1% Vitae Springs grapes.