Cristom Oregon Pinot Noir Wine Tasting

Friday, June 12, 2020 - 07:30 PM

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A mind of the caliber of mine cannot derive its nutriment from cows. - George Bernard Shaw on wine

 

 

 

We like cows but we like wine better!

 

 

Toni and I made a trip to Oregon last summer and although we did see a few wineries it was not really a wine trip we were there to celebrate her Birthday and our 21st anniversary.  One of the wineries that we did stop by to visit with our good friend Randy Ford was Cristom Winery.  I have been a big fan of this winery for decades and the new releases are all spectacular, but it was good to visit the vineyards and kiss the dirt that makes these wines so special.  This trip brought back memories of my first visit to the Willamette Valley in 1996.

 

It had been over 20 years since my last trip to Oregon but ironically one of the stops that I personally made on my first trip to Oregon over 20 years ago was to see Steve Doerner at Cristom Winery.   I had met Steve when he was with Calera Winery, which is one of the founding fathers of great Burgundian Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in the central coast of California so I knew if Steve left this iconic producer the terroir for Cristom had to be special.  Well it is over 20 years now and Steve must love it in Oregon because he is still there and he must love Cristom as he is still the winemaker here which is one of the things that gives a winery consistency – the same winemaker for almost three decades.

 

So, when we secured big collection of older vintage wines from Cristom Winery we immediately set aside all the oldest bottles to put on event with our good friend Cameron Scott.  We will be tasting through over a dozen vintages of Pinot Noir going all the way back to the inaugural release 1992.   I have also included all the older vintages and large format bottles we have which are priced very similar to the current release wines! 



 

Cristom Oregon Pinot Noir Wine Tasting back to their first vintage 1992!

With Special Guest Cameron Scott

Friday, June 12, 2020

7:30 PM

 

1992 Cristom Pinot Noir Reserve WIllamette Valley

1992 Cristom Pinot Noir WIllamette Valley

1994 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley

1996 Cristom Louise Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills

1998 Cristom Pinot Noir Reserve Willamette Valley

1999 Cristom Pinot Noir Reserve Willamette Valley

1999 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

2002 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

2003 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

2004 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

2006 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

2008 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

2009 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

 

Menu

Selection of Cheese and Charcuterie

Foie Gras seared with Balsamic Glazed Wild Mushrooms and dried cherries

Tuna Carpaccio with Mint and Elderflower Aioli

Crispy Duck Confit with 5 Spice Natural Sauce and Vegetable Spring rolls with Plum Dipping Sauce

Raspberry Chocolate Mousse

 

The fee for this tasting is $195 + tax and this includes dinner, for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail andy@winewatch.com.  If you have any food allergies please let us know when you make your reservation and chef Toni will be happy to accommodate you. 

 

 

 

A bit about Cristom Winery:

 

Image result for cristom winery

Cristom Vineyards began a quarter of a century ago as a collaboration between an engineer and a biochemist who each possessed a deep-rooted respect for the land, the natural winemaking process, and Pinot Noir. 25 years later, second-generation winegrower and owner Tom Gerrie leads winemaker Steve Doerner and our tenured viticulture team in tending our Estate vineyards, and producing elegant, dynamic wines, recognizable by our hallmark style of whole-cluster fermentation by native yeasts.

 

Our winemaking philosophy begins with respect for our land and estate vines. We're proud to be Certified Sustainable by Low Input Viticulture & Enology (LIVE), both in our winery which we run responsibly, and in our fields, that are thoughtfully and meticulously farmed with a focus on quality.

 

The four estate Pinot Noir vineyards - Eileen, Jessie, Louise and Marjorie, named for Gerrie family matriarchs - each possess natural variances in soil, elevation and exposition. With minimal intervention during the winemaking process, Tom, Steve and team strive to craft wines that are an honest recording of both the vineyard and the vintage, producing the ultimate expressions of the stellar fruit we’re fortunate enough to work with. Recognized globally as a leading producer in our beloved Willamette Valley, our wines continue to be a unique blend of tradition, modernity and finesse.

 

 

 

A bit about the Founding Fathers Paul Gerrie:

 

After graduating from University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Engineering, I became interested in wine. I started with French bottles (with the occasional California jug tossed in) and can still remember my first exceptional Pinot noir. It was a 1980 Echezeaux and it was astonishing. From that point on I was hooked on Pinot!

 

Around 1990, I started looking for a career change that would be interesting and challenging. Despite the fact that I lived on the East Coast, the first thing that came to mind was the wine business. Around that time, some friends invited my wife and me to attend the International Pinot Noir Celebration (IPNC) in McMinnville, Oregon. During our 1991 visit, we fell in love with Oregon and began to think it would be a good place to raise our young family. Soon after, I was introduced to Mike Etzel who helped me to find land that would produce great Pinot noir grapes. Mike found the site that is now Cristom.

In the summer of 1992, my wife Eileen and our children, Christine and Tom and I moved from Pennsylvania to Oregon. There has been no looking back. Through serendipity and good fortune, we were able to hire Steve Doerner as our winemaker, and Mark Feltz as our vineyard manager. Our first vintage was in 1992 and we were up and running. Twenty years later, we are still trying to make the best Pinot Noir on the planet!

 

A bit about winemaker Steve Doerner:

In 1992, after working for Calera (a California Pinot Noir producer) for 14 years, I was ready for a change. I identified two goals to help determine where I wanted to work next. First, I wanted to continue making Pinot Noir, and second I wanted to work for a small company. It didn’t take much persuasion from Paul Gerrie to convince me that Oregon was the place and that Cristom was the company. At the time it seemed like a hard decision but it’s been twenty years now, and I’ve never looked back.

My goal is to make wines that have balance, wines that have weight and power and finesse and elegance. I’ve honed my craft by traveling and studying winemaking around the world. I’ve been to Chile, Italy, France, Germany, Australia, and New Zealand. But Oregon is always home and I like working at Cristom because it’s so varied. My work is influenced by the seasons and by a constant desire to meld the art of winemaking with the terroir of the Willamette Valley. Of course I’m incredibly proud of our Pinot noirs, but also of our exceptional Chardonnay, Viognier, and Syrah.

 

ALL of the wines from Cristom available at Wine Watch:

 

See the source image

2019 Cristom Rose Pinot Noir Willamette Valley

List Price: $30.00                Your Price: $26.40

 

Cristom Rose of Pinot Noir is comprised entirely of fruit from the Eola-Amity estate. For this release, Cristom blended one cluster from each plant of specific blocks of the Jessie and Louise Vineyards, to the base of the wine, which hails from their third-leaf Paul Gerrie Vineyard plantings. This blending choice brings intensity and weight to the rose, while at the same time allowing for longer hang time for the Pinot remaining on the vine. Crisp hints of watermelon, petite strawberry and lychee fruit highlights this fresh, vibrant wine.

 

 

 

2016 Estate Pinot Gris

2019 Cristom Pinot Gris Willamette Valley

List Price: $27.00               Your Price: $23.76

 

 

 

Planted in 1993, our Estate Pinot Gris is one of the finest examples of the varietal found in the Willamette Valley.

 

Cristom Pinot Gris Willamette Valley 2016

Price: $21.50        Sale $18.92           Quantity in Stock: 4

 

The 2016 Estate Pinot Gris exudes fruit aromas of clingstone peach and honeydew melon, and white floral aromas like sweet autumn clematis, gardenia, jasmine and Lily of the Valley. The wine is stylistically dry and food-friendly, with fine phenolics and a lovely finish with subtle, silky creaminess.

 

Image result for Cristom Viognier Willamette Valley 2016

 

Cristom Viognier Willamette Valley 2018

Price: $28.25        Sale $24.86

 

The 2018 Cristom Vineyards Estate Viognier exhibits the pure, and nearly textbook, characteristics of this varietal, with aromas of orange blossoms, honeysuckle, clover, and anise as well as the ripe fruit aromas of peach, apricot, and lychee.  Slightly viscous on the palate, with bright and mouth watering acidity that support the fruit structure of the wine, it is well integrated and perfectly balanced.

 

2018 Cristom Chardonnay Willamette Valley

Price: $38.00        Your Price: $33.44

 

This is the first vintage of Chardonnay that we have seen in South Florida and although Oregon was not known for great Chardonnay in the past they are finally getting up to speed and the Chardonnay’s are making leaps and bounds in terms of improvement in quality.

 

2014 Cristom Estate Chardonnay Willamette Valley

Price: $35.00        Your Price: $30.80              Quantity in Stock: 9

 

Pinot Noir

 

 

 

Image result for Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley 2016

 

Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley 2018            

Price: $37.50        Sale $27.75

 

Mt. Jefferson Cuvée is a blend of the Cristom estate Pinot Noir vineyards along with exceptional fruit we source from neighboring vineyards in the Willamette Valley. These vineyard sites have been thoughtfully selected over the years, and are planted on a variety of soil types, elevations and aspects, representing the Willamette Valley Appellation as a broader whole. These vineyards are farmed by committed winegrowers we are proud to partner with, with each site adding to the character, fruit, and structure of the wine, giving “Mt. Jeff” its deserved reputation as one of the most stylistically consistent Pinot Noirs in the world.

Wine Watch Review:  A pretty bouquet of wild strawberry and red cherry berry fruit with notes of exotic spices, dried flowers and hints of smoky nuance.  Smooth and silky texture on the tongue with a good amount of bright red berry fruit, exotic spices and a firm hand of acidity holding things together nicely.  This wine is delicious right out of the bottle but has the structure to age at least 5-7 years or more in your cellar.  Finish 40+  Excellent

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image result for Cristom Louise Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 2015

 

2017 Cristom Louise Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills

Price: $60.00        Your Price: $52.80

 

(94 Points) Louise is one of Cristom’s warmer, low-elevation sites, with both Jory soils and flood deposits on its lower slopes. The wine is sleek and warm, with scents of tar and black cherries, and bright flavors of cherry and red plum delivered with polished tannins. It could age for years; then serve with quail. Wine & Spirits

 

2017 Cristom Eileen Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills

List Price: $60.00 Your Price: $52.80

 

The Eileen Vineyard is named for Cristom’s co-founder, Eileen Gerrie, mother of second-generation winegrower-owner Tom Gerrie. Original planting of the Eileen Vineyard began in 1997 and was later expanded in 2006, resulting in a total of 16.61 acres. Perched atop the Cristom estate, Eileen is also our highest-elevation vineyard, with commanding views of Oregon’s Cascade Range to the east, and Coastal Range to the west

 

2017 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley

List Price: $75.00                Your Price: $66.00

 

The famed Marjorie Vineyard boasts Cristom’s oldest estate plantings, predating the company back to 1982. Named in honor of winegrower-owner Tom Gerrie’s grandmother, Marjorie is distinctive at Cristom both for being own-rooted, and for its lower-density plantings, (605 vines/acre; 1,495 vines/hectacre), with 6 feet between vines and 12 feet between rows.

 

2017 Cristom Jessie Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills

List Price: $60.00                Your Price: $52.80

 

The Jessie Vineyard, named for winegrower-owner Tom Gerrie’s great-grandmother Jessie Summers, was established in 1994 after the Gerrie family saw great potential in planting a steep, east-facing hillside to a variety of Pinot Noir clones. Ranging in elevation from 320 ft to 550 ft (98 m to 168 m), this 11.53 acre (4.67 hectare) site is one of the steepest in Oregon, and the most challenging to farm on the Cristom Estate. Jessie is strategically planted at a high density of 2,311 vines per acre (5,710 vines/hectare), based on the philosophy that dense planting creates competition amongst neighboring vines, forcing roots deeper into the topsoil to yield smaller clusters with more concentrated flavors.  -cristomvineyards.com

 

Image result for Cristom Estate Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 2014

 

Cristom Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 2014

Price: $69.00        Sale $60.72           Quantity in Stock: 3

 

(95 points) "Bright red. Suave, smoke-accented aromas of raspberry preserves, pungent flowers, incense and cola, along with a hint of allspice in the background. Sappy and expansive on the palate, offering intense red berry, allspice and floral pastille flavors that are sharpened by a jolt of zesty acidity. Shows superb clarity and spicy bite on a long, penetrating finish shaped by silky, even tannins. The interplay of power and finesse here is really something." Drinking window 2020-2027  Josh Raynolds, Vinous, January

 

2012 Cristom Pinot Noir Jessie Vineyard Willamette Valley

Price: $65.00        Your Price: $57.20

 

Jessie Vineyard tends to produce Pinot Noirs that are recognized by a savory aroma that often calls to mind rare-beef. It also tends to have a very fresh and appealing scent of minerality, along with some higher tone lavender—purple flower notes. On the palate, Jessie tends towards a full mouth-feel and a deeper—darker—rounder impression. They find a certain "nervosity" in this wine that describes some part of the tension between the ripe fruit and the structure of the wine.

 

 

 

Syrah

 

2016 Cristom Estate Syrah Willamette Valley

Price: $42.50       Your Price: $37.40            Quantity in Stock: 24

 

2012 Cristom Syrah Willamette Valley

Price: $49.00       Your Price: $43.12            Quantity in Stock: 11

 

2009 Cristom Syrah Willamette Valley

Price: $45.00       Your Price: $39.60            Quantity in Stock: 12

 

2008 Cristom Syrah Willamette Valley

Price: $49.00       Your Price: $43.12            Quantity in Stock: 10

 

2005 Cristom Syrah Willamette Valley

Price: $49.00       Your Price: $43.12            Quantity in Stock: 24

Cristom began experimenting with Syrah in 2002, by grafting over plantings of Chardonnay on the lower slopes of our estate.  We carefully selected which vines to graft over, choosing a low-lying block on our hillside where heat accumulation is at its highest on the estate, giving our Syrah the best opportunity to ripen in a moderate maritime climate.

Originally, 2.5 acres (1.01 hectares) of Chardonnay were grafted over to four clones of Syrah. The clones selected – 174, 383, 470, and 877 – were chosen primarily for their recognized heritage of producing small berries, encouraging our chances of ripening Syrah in the Willamette Valley. However, after cool growing seasons in 2007, 2008 and 2010, we made the decision to graft half of the estate Syrah over to Viognier in 2011. All that remains is 0.31 acres (0.125 hectares) of each of the four clones, totaling 1.24 acres (0.50 hectares) of estate Syrah.

We produce an extremely limited quantities of this wine, resulting in a bit of a cult following for it over the years.  The Cristom Estate Syrah wines are defined by spice, balance, perfume, texture and nuance, gaining complexity in the bottle for a decade or more.

Vintage Notes  In 2015, vines got off to a warm and dry start with the earliest budbreak (March!) ever recorded at our estate – a full 3 weeks earlier than our twenty-five-year average. Warmth continued through spring, leading to bloom beginning in most blocks at the end of May – also the earliest ever recorded at the estate. The warm, dry weather during flowering was prime for yielding a heavy fruit set, and the vineyard produced sizeable clusters with large berries. These ideal growing conditions created the rare combination of abundant quantity and exceptional quality fruit, producing intensely fragrant and energetic wines that show a blend of depth, concentration and nuance.

 

 

 

Older Vintages in perfect condition from Cristom that will be here in a month from one of our collector’s cellar.

 

We have been procuring private collections here at Wine Watch for over a decade now and most of the older wines we have in the store come from local collectors.  We don’t buy wines that we do not drink first to test the provenance and this collector has been stock piling Cristom’s wines going all the way back to the first vintage!!  There are also some incredible large format wines on this offering and you can see the writing on the wall there will be a vintage Cristom wine tasting on the calendar coming up over the next few months- Stay tuned!!

 

 

 

2014 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 12

 

2014 Cristom Estate Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills

Price: $54.00        Your Price: $47.52              Quantity in Stock: 24

 

2013 Cristom Pinot Noir Mt. Jefferson Cuvée Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 12

 

2012 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 12

 

2011 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $49.50        Your Price: $43.56              Quantity in Stock: 10

 

2011 Cristom Louise Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills Magnum

Price: $115.00     Your Price: $101.20           Quantity in Stock: 6

 

2010 Cristom Pinot Noir Jessie Vineyard Willamette Valley Magnum

Price: $115.00     Your Price: $101.20           Quantity in Stock: 6

 

2009 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 10

 

2008 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 22

 

2006 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 8

 

2004 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 21

 

2003 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 7

 

2002 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 15

 

2002 Cristom Jessie Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 3 Liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2002 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley 3 Liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2001 Cristom Louise Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 3 liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2001 Cristom Eileen Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 5 liter

Price: $525.00     Your Price: $462.00           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2001 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley 3 Liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2001 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley 5 Liter

Price: $595.00     Your Price: $523.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2000 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley 3 Liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2000 Cristom Eileen Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 3 Liter

Price: $350.00     Your Price: $308.00           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2000 Cristom Eileen Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 5 Liter

Price: $595.00     Your Price: $523.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2000 Cristom Jessie Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 3 Liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

2000 Cristom Louise Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 3 liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

1999 Cristom Pinot Noir Mount Jefferson Willamette Valley

Price: $39.00        Your Price: $34.32              Quantity in Stock: 10

 

1999 Cristom Pinot Noir Reserve Willamette Valley

Price: $49.00        Your Price: $43.12              Quantity in Stock: 7

 

1998 Cristom Pinot Noir Reserve Willamette Valley

Price: $69.00        Your Price: $60.72              Quantity in Stock: 10

 

1998 Cristom Jessie Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 3 Liter

List Price: $395.00             Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

1998 Cristom Jessie Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills 5 Liter

Price: $650.00     Your Price: $572.00           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

1996 Cristom Louise Vineyard Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills

Price: $59.75        Your Price: $52.58              Quantity in Stock: 22

 

1994 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley

Price: $65.00        Your Price: $57.20              Quantity in Stock: 19

 

1994 Cristom Pinot Noir Marjorie Willamette Valley 3 Liter

Price: $395.00     Your Price: $347.60           Quantity in Stock: 1

 

1992 Cristom Pinot Noir WIllamette Valley

Price: $59.00        Your Price: $51.92              Quantity in Stock: 10

 

1992 Cristom Pinot Noir WIllamette Valley Magnum

Price: $139.00     Your Price: $122.32           Quantity in Stock: 5

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