Spring 2007 – Bursting Forth
Spring is definitely in the air here in Carlton (that means it’s still raining about half the time!). As the vines gather their energy to push out the new buds in the coming weeks, we too are readying quite an array of exhilarating new activity…
2005 Scott Paul Pinots – The Official Release!
To order online, click here.
The 2005 La Paulée and Audrey Pinots are now officially here and ready to fly. If you didn’t already grab some when we offered these as futures, now’s the time to get ‘em before they’re gone. Especially in the case of Audrey, where availability is down to just a handful of 6-packs due to strong demand for the futures offering.
Release party April 28th – be there!
Please plan to join us for our Release Party & Open House on Saturday April 28th from 11 to 4 – the new wines will be open for tasting, along with a selection of yummy Burgundies from our Scott Paul Selections portfolio, and we’ll have some delicious nibbles to accompany all. If you planned to pick up your futures at the winery – this would be a great time.
The 2005 Scott Paul Pinots
The 2005 growing season here in the North Willamette Valley gave us challenges in the vineyard throughout the year, but ended up giving us beautifully balanced fruit to bring into the winery in September & October. Once again, as in 2004, mother nature gave us very little fruit to work with. We ended up averaging just 1.1 tons per acre in ’05 (up from a whopping .8 tons in ’04!), so again our production was cut nearly in half.
The good news is that this tiny crop ripened nicely, with beautiful flavors and a near-perfect fruit/acid/tannin balance – and all before the rains hit at the end of September. All of our blocks at every site except Maresh vineyard were picked by Sept. 29th. The rains then kindly stopped after a few days and allowed the old vines to finish their job, and we picked our blocks at Maresh on October 9th – which turned out to be the best fruit of the year (and perhaps the best wine we’ve ever put in the bottle – the ’05 Audrey.)
On-line ordering has returned to scottpaul.com.
Just click here to access your secure order form…
The magnificent 2005 Burgundies…
Amidst all the hype and horn-blowing for various vintages and wine regions throughout history and around the world – occasionally the truth actually exceeds the expectations. Such is the case with the soon-to-arrive 2005s from Burgundy. I’ll leave it to the Burgundy world’s leading expert and critic, Allen Meadows.
“Let’s cut directly to the chase while passing Go (be sure to collect your $200 as you’re going to need it) – 2005 is quite simply the best top to bottom vintage that I have ever seen, period, full stop. Yes, I understand perfectly well that is a bold and heavy duty statement but there it is in all its unequivocal nakedness. 2005 is a brilliant vintage with virtually nothing to dislike (except perhaps the prices) and here is the key point, it’s also great from top to bottom. Moreover, in terms of regional and villages wines, 2005 is so good that it blows the next closest recent contender, 1999, right out of the water.”
BURGHOUND – January 2007
I have personally tasted nearly four hundred different 2005 Burgundies, and all I can say is I concur wholeheartedly. The wines are excellent top to bottom and across the board. It’s one of those rare vintages where everyone made good wine. It’s an exciting time to be in the Burgundy business, to be sure.
We’re expecting the first container of our 2005 Burgs to arrive in late May, and the interest and demand for these wines is at a level I’ve never seen before. All of your favorite producers from last year will of course be back this time, along with four exciting new additions to the portfolio.
We will begin offering some of the 2005 Burgs on a Pre-Arrival basis on April 25th. Watch your email for the announcement, and we urge you to act quickly to secure the wines you want. (Also, if you purchased 2005 Hospices de Beaune futures from us last year, they’ll be arriving in late May – details soon…)
New Additions to the Portfolio…
Domaine J-J Confuron
The opportunity to represent this superstar domaine was a stroke of great fortune for us. One of Burgundy’s most respected top-tier producers is now in the hands of the husband & wife team of Alain & Sophie Meunier, who took over from Sophie’s father in 1988. Among their vineyard holdings are prime villages and Premier Cru holdings in Chambolle-Musigny, and a gorgeous old-vine parcel of the Grand Cru Romanée-St. Vivant (one of Allen Meadow’s “Don’t Miss Wines of the Vintage.”)
Maison Lucien Le Moine
This micro-producer is based in the jewel-box village of Beaune. The team of Mounir Saouma and Rotem Brakir (he’s Lebanese, she’s Israeli) produces over 20 different wines in miniscule quantities – generally one or two barrels of each – with nearly a dozen of the top Grand Crus including Richebourg, Romanée-St.Vivant, Clos de Beze and Bonnes Mares in their arsenal. Their wines routinely score in the hi-90s – in fact 14 out of 20 reviewed were over 94 pts. in the latest Steve Tanzer report.
Domaine Jean-Marc Millot
Jean-Marc Millot’s 17 acres of vineyard holdings are concentrated in the villages of Vosne-Romanée, Vougeot, and Flagey-Echezeaux. Jean-Marc took over the domaine in 1990, but has had most of the Grand Cru sites since only 1998 (his wife was an heir to an old domaine that’s no longer around.) His wines are the epitome of elegance, purity, and understatement, with a beautiful sense of finesse, harmony and overall balance.
The roots of the family estate go back to the 1700’s, and today’s superb vineyard holdings in Gevrey-Chambertin, Morey-St. Denis and Chambolle-Musigny were united by the marriage of two winemaking families three generations ago. Now in the hands of 41 year-old Romain Taupenot and his sister Virginie, 36, they are the 7th generation to continue the family tradition. The wines are rich, round, well-balanced, and built to age. Romain Taupenot will be joining us in Oregon for IPNC – the International Pinot Noir Celebration – this summer. See below for more IPNC information.
Profile – Winemaker Kelley Fox
Kelley Fox joined us as our fulltime winemaker in August of 2005, after having worked with us part-time during the 2003 harvest. I first met Kelley at the Steamboat winemakers conference in southern Oregon in the summer of 2001, when I had just joined Domaine Drouhin as its new Managing Director. Kelley was making wine & the GM for Torii Mor then, and our mutual passion for great Pinot formed the basis for a friendship that continues to this day.
When we moved our operations to the Winemakers Studio for the 2003 harvest, Kelley had moved on to making wine for Hamacher – and Eric Hamacher kindly offered that Kelley might have some time to work with us if we needed (and we did – at that point Scott Paul was an army of one!) We quickly discovered that we were of one mind on all matters concerning Pinot – our palates were completely in line, our philosophies in harmony, and we each perfectly understood what it was we were trying to achieve with the wines. I knew that if we ever had the opportunity to add a fulltime member to the team, Kelley was our first and only choice.
However, we didn’t quite have the need for someone just yet, and before I knew it “Papa Pinot” – David Lett of The Eyrie Vineyard, the founding father of the Oregon Pinot industry – did have an opening, and he wisely snatched Kelley up starting in 2004. Never being one to accept defeat easily, I devised a way to create a fulltime opening for the fall of 2005, and set about to luring Kelley back into our world. Ultimately, the universe aligned itself in our favor, and we were incredibly fortunate to bring Kelley in as the first addition to the Scott Paul team.
She has a remarkable background, with degrees in Biochemistry, Bio-physics, Psychology and Biology, and is a poet-warrior-philosopher-mystic and mother. Along with her years of winemaking in Oregon she also worked the 2004 harvest in New Zealand, and is a great student of life, nature, and wine.
Kelley’s skills and talents take much better care of the wines than I could ever hope to. As the growth of Scott Paul pulls me more and more in many different directions – it is her constant efforts in the cellar and vineyards that make our wines what they are. We always taste together, make our blending decisions together, and hone in together on what it is we’re looking for and trying to achieve with the wines, and it is a wondrously successful combination. Our wines are much better off for having Kelley at the helm, and I am proud and honored that she is our winemaker.
When not in the cellar or the vines, Kelley can be found fly-fishing, mushroom hunting, wilderness hiking, or simply enjoying life in McMinnville with her two daughters and a bevy of friends.
CLASSES AND EVENTS…
We’re excited to continue our series of Burgundy seminars, with classes for both beginning and advanced Burg-lovers. If you’ve ever wanted to learn more about one of the world’s finest (yet most confusing) wine regions – these seminars are for you.
Saturday, May 12th 6-8 p.m. Cost: $40
Burgundy, one of the world’s legendary wine regions, is home to the world’s finest Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines. (Yes, all red Burgundy is made from the Pinot Noir grape, and all white Burgundy is made from the Chardonnay grape – you now know more than 99% of the population!) Scott will explain a little history, different village characteristics, as well as how to decipher a Burgundian wine label. You’ll learn a lot about hedonistic pleasure and romance and will emerge armed with more Burgundy knowledge than anyone you know (unless they’re a confirmed Burgundy geek, that is.)
Burgundy: The Graduate Course
Saturday, June 9th 6 -8 p.m. Cost: $55
Scott, a self-professed Burgundy Geek, is looking for other experienced Burgundy-philes to indulge his love of the region. We’ll delve deeply into the nuances of various terroirs, producers, and vintages – and pull the corks on some stellar Premier and Grand Crus. Explore the characteristics of famous vineyards in the hands of different producers, look into different production techniques, and discuss all sorts of minutia that makes Burgundy endlessly fascinating.
For all seminars we’ll provide a light meal of French cheese & charcuterie from Steve’s Cheese and bread from Pearl Bakery to accompany the six or so featured Burgundies. A special 25% case discount on all Scott Paul Selections Burgundies will be offered the evening of the class as well. Seminars are limited to 30 people and held at the tasting room in Carlton. Please contact Kelly Karr at email@example.com or 503-319-5827 to sign up.
Memorial Day Weekend Open House
The first one in our new facilities! Join us for the annual rite of spring – we’ll be open 10-4 (come early to beat the traffic and crowds) on Saturday & Sunday, May 26th & 27th. Your $5 tasting fee includes an array of cheeses and charcuterie, and of course a killer line-up of Scott Paul Oregon Pinots and a selection of Burgundies. (It is possible that the 2005 Burgundies will have arrived by then – if so you’ll be in for a very special treat.) We’ll be open regular tasting room hours 11-4 on Monday the 28th, without all the Open House hoopla…
Our 1st Anniversary party – June 16th
Last year we threw open our doors for the first time on our converted creamery/granary/tasting room in Carlton. Saturday June 16th will mark our 365th day in our new home – and that’s as good an excuse as any for a party! We’re still working on the details, but it seems as of this writing that a barbecue is in the works. Save the date and watch your email for all the details…
IPNC – The International Pinot Noir Celebration – July 27th – 29th
Now in its 21st year – IPNC has truly become the best of all wine events in the U.S. every year. It’s a gathering of 60 of the top Pinot Noir producers from around the world with a few hundred of the top Pinot Noir lovers from across America – for three days of pure unadulterated joy. Seminars, vineyard visits, luncheons, tastings, dinners under the stars, and more fabulous Pinot Noir in one place than one could imagine!
We are honored to have been chosen as one of the featured wineries for IPNC this year, and even more exciting is the news that we’ll have three of our Burgundian producers coming across the ocean to participate this summer. Romain Taupenot, of Domaine Taupenot-Merme in Morey-St. Denis, Thierry & Estelle Violot of Domaine Violot-Guillemard in Pommard, and Aleth Girardin from Pommard will also be featured wineries this year – and of course their wines will be showcased in the Scott Paul tasting room in July…
As of this writing tickets to IPNC are still available – go to http://www.ipnc.org for more information.
Family Vacation to Burgundy!
I’ll be pretty hard to get a hold of the last week of June and the first half of July – I’ll be eating escargot, jambon persillée and gigot d’agneau at Ma Cuisine in Beaune, as Martha, Pirrie and I enjoy a working vacation in Burgundy. We’ll be tasting the 2006s in barrel, working in the vineyards as the 2007 crop develops, and generally hanging out with all our producers and their families up and down the Côte d’Or. Many of our producers have children Pirrie’s age, and Domaine Violot-Guillemard has a new swimming pool – how bad can it be?!
As always, thanks for joining us on our amazing journey!
Martha & Scott Wright