Rain at flowering and some hot summer days led to a small but ripe vintage and readily accessible wines.
2004 was a generally warm and early growing year. Early bud break and low fruit set had harvest predictions at Labor Day, their earliest ever, before the weather modified in the final weeks leading up to picking. The resultant crop was small and ripe and produced good wines with more ready accessibility. Falls slightly on power in the power/grace divide.
2004 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
A few days of rain at flowering and a few days of hot during summer led to a ripe, but small high-quality vintage in 2004. In barrel the small crop delivered great ripe fruit and not overly colored nor excessively extracted wines. Our 2004 Willamette Valley blend comes from three highly respected vineyards: Temperence Hill, Shea Vineyard, and Anderson Family. The wine is a translucent violet red with a hit-you-at-arm’s-length aroma of ripe cherry paint and warm paraffin. The wine throws fruit, mineral and ester from a balanced but linear perspective in three distinct waves: First, fresh acidity pushing deep. Next, a deceptive mid-palate driving perfectly ripe cherry followed by jerky, watermelon and peach. Finally, a long reverberating finish with perfect grip. Well cellared, this wine should climb in complexity for at least five to seven years and stay on the plateau for sometime thereafter. 13.75% alcohol, pH 3.63, 667 cases.
2004 Anderson Family Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
The wine for these three best barrels comes from the steep and rocky south block of Anderson Family Vineyards. A low fruit set in 2004 limited our crop, resulting in great concentration of flavor in the remaining berries and ultimately, the wine made from them. This translucent dark mineral red wine throws a seamless nose of peach, ripe cherries, iron and orange rind. A long broad palate bursting with cherry and citrus, dark roast coffee and orange pekoe tea bounces around the mouth with punch and persistence. From the get-go the wine had all the aromatic constituents associate with Burgundy: mineral, dark, slight herbal with an absolute seamlessness that speaks to the whole being better than the sum of its parts. We anticipate additional complexity during its first 10 years with a potential 12- to 20-year drinking horizon. 75 cases. $65.
2004 Antoinette Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
This wine honors owner/winemaker Jim Prosser’s grandmother, Antoinette Carriere, and reflects the pinnacle of elegance out of the JKC cellar. Antoinette is a single-vineyard designate from Temperance Hill Vineyard, where cooler high-elevation vines deliver old vine complexity with fresh acidity. A translucent violet red, the color of the wine echoes the pretty aroma of black cherries, olive and dusty spice. Powered by linear acidity and elegant tannins, the mouth is full of fresh cherry, spiced peaches, cranberry, grilled meat, toffee and oiled wood. This wine is clean, subtle, elegant, lengthy – in a word, serious. Decant within its first 3 years, anticipate additional complexity during its first 10 years, and plan on drinking from 12 to 20 years. 75 cases.
2004 Shea Vineyard Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
This wine represents our three best barrels made from Shea Vineyard, a warm and early site that delivers fruit of optimal ripeness and opulence in bottle. In glass the wine is translucent red throwing a huge nose of graham-crust cherry pie with black pepper and crayola overtones. On the palate it offers fresh cherry, raspberry, green tea, and sassafras flavors before a surprising late hit of bubble gum. It starts big, shows unexpected elegance, then gains momentum, transitions on wrapped tannins and goes long. Decant within its first three years. Well cellared, anticipate additional complexity during its first 10 years with a potential 12- to 20-year drinking horizon. 75 cases.
2004 Provocateur Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
Provocateur is French for troublemaker. We believe a full life should include some time spent wearing that moniker. Our grandfather’s face is on the label. He lived a full life. With its bright garnet color and somewhat demure spice nose, this wine screams youth. Boysenberry, cherry, chocolate, and black pepper are delivered to the nose. On the palate, a fast-flowing river of acidity and kicking minerality carries cranberry, cherry, and red current past the tributaries of dark toast, oiled wood and butterscotch, eventually depositing them with great mouthfeel on a beach of fine tannin. Drink now to five years and think about getting it some air in the first couple. 425 cases.
2004 Glass Willamette Valley White Pinot Noir
Glass is the name we give to our “white” pinot noir, although the color is shiny pink like a new penny. The nose is lemon meringue and key lime parading before a hint of lily, nutmeg and yeast. Meyer lemon, quince, tangerine and grapefruit zest combine on the palate, reminiscent of a Chilean Pisco Sour with no perceptible sugar. The structure is abundantly weighty and finely textured with racy acidity that remains focused on the sustained and slightly spritzy lemon curd finish. In 2004 we produced 325 cases of this whole cluster pressed and slow barrel-fermented pinot noir. The wine is aged utilizing traditional Champagne methodologies to promote roundness and drive color and then racked and filtered prior to bottling (April 2005). Glass is best enjoyed seated on a rooftop or deck, sipping it cool in the waning heat of the evening.