Aromas of yellow apple and tart pineapple. Primary flavors of Asian pear, apricot, and lemonade. Secondary flavors angelica and apple skin. Finish is tart and round.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Coming from the incredibly talented team at Alban Vineyards, the 2019 Chardonnay had just been bottled two weeks prior to this tasting, yet it certainly wasn’t any worse for it and showed brilliantly. Aged in new 300-liter barrels, it offers a layered, complex nose of caramelized lemon, brioche, toasted bread, and buttered peach, with some classic salinity on the palate. Medium to full-bodied, it’s beautifully balanced, has perfectly integrated oak, and a great finish. I think it’s the finest vintage I’ve tasted from them.
Here in the “North Valley”, we work to nurture and craft our artisan wines, honoring the best raw materials that nature has to provide. Further, we seek a noteworthy diversity of sources from within the six sub-appellations of the region, giving us a broad palate of flavors and profiles from which to assemble our blends. So whether it is the Dundee Hills, Ribbon Ridge, the Eola-Amity Hills, Yamhill-Carlton District, Chehalem Mountain area, or McMinnville, we are there, spending time with our growers in their vineyards each week, from flowering all the way through harvest.
One of Pinot Noir's most successful New World outposts, the Willamette Valley is the largest and most important AVA in Oregon. With a continental climate moderated by the influence of the Pacific Ocean, it is perfect for cool-climate viticulture and the production of elegant wines.
Mountain ranges bordering three sides of the valley, particularly the Chehalem Mountains, provide the option for higher-elevation vineyard sites.
The valley's three prominent soil types (volcanic, sedimentary and silty, loess) make it unique and create significant differences in wine styles among its vineyards and sub-AVAs. The iron-rich, basalt-based, Jory volcanic soils found commonly in the Dundee Hills are rich in clay and hold water well; the chalky, sedimentary soils of Ribbon Ridge, Yamhill-Carlton and McMinnville encourage complex root systems as vines struggle to search for water and minerals. In the most southern stretch of the Willamette, the Eola-Amity Hills sub-AVA soils are mixed, shallow and well-drained. The Hills' close proximity to the Van Duzer Corridor (which became its own appellation as of 2019) also creates grapes with great concentration and firm acidity, leading to wines that perfectly express both power and grace.
Though Pinot noir enjoys the limelight here, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay also thrive in the Willamette. Increasing curiosity has risen recently in the potential of others like Grüner Veltliner, Chenin Blanc and Gamay.
One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.