I think it's very cool that Stephen Lutz, owner of Lenne Estate, manages all the vineyard, winemaking and business aspects. Lutz previously worked at Beringer, Franciscan, Inglenook, Vichon, Merryvale (Napa) and Chateau Benoit and Anne Amie (Oregon), so he has a wide range of experience and it shows in the wine.
The Lenne Estate vineyard shares a ridge with Willakenzie Estate, Deux Vert, Shea, Solena, Roots and Penner-Ash. We had the opportunity to taste a few of the others at a Portfolio tasting earlier this week, and there seems to be some similarities between them, in a very positive way. The vineyard was planted between 2001-2004 at an elevation of 375-575 feet, with 2,084 vines per acre. The philosophy from the beginning has been to dry farm, forcing the roots deep to look for water and nutrients.
2010 Pinot Noir: cold soaked 5 days; fermented, then aged for 11 months in French oak barrels; ruby red color with mahogany edges; violet, tomato, green tea, and earthy aromas; rhubarb, oregano, olive and mushroom flavors into a cinnamon and black pepper on finish; satiny texture with moderate tannins; cork closure; 225 cases produced; SRP $45.00. Could probably use a few years in bottle, if not more - this is one to buy and lay down to taste the progression.
In a related matter, if you love Oregon wine, you can become an investor in a proposed 12,000 case custom crush wine facility at Lenné. More information on the Lenne Estate Investment webpage.
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