Tavola Pinot Noir 2017
The 2017 Tavola Pinot Noir continues a string of amazing Tavola vintages. The running joke at our office is that the wine is literally too good for the price. While made from lower elevation sites and younger vines, and handled in a way to emphasize a fruit forward character, with soft tannins, anything Luisa Ponzi approaches will have high quality as prerequisite. Tavola is the type of wine that can be an introduction to Oregon and Willamette Valley Pinot Noir and, with its generous fruit and exotic spice and floral notes, the start of a delicious exploration.
The 2017 Tavola Pinot Noir is produced from Ponzi’s LIVE Certified Sustainable Avellana Vineyard, as well as other sustainably-grown vineyards in the Chehalem Mountains, Yamhill-Carlton and Eola-Amity Hills AVAs.
All fruit is sorted then destemmed to 1.5–3 ton fermenters. An extended cold soak increases color and aroma. Fermented by native yeasts, the peak temperatures reach 90°F. The fermenters were aerated or punched down twice a day, then lightly pressed. The wine was aged in French oak for 11 months (20% new). A barrel selection is made for Tavola, then racked and bottled by gravity without fining or filtration. This wine has been bottle aged for 4 months before release.
The 2017 vintage was a welcome throwback to more classic vintage years after the previous 5 warm years. Winter and spring were unusually cold, delaying bud break by a few weeks into April and bloom following suit in late June. Fortunately, the Willamette Valley was spared any effect from the terrible smoke and fires that wreaked havoc in Northern California.
Fruit set was very large, so judicious fruit thinning was required to maintain quality and control volume. Cool nights during harvest kept acids brilliant and rain ensured beautiful conditions for ripe, clean fruit with mature skin and seed tannin. Reminiscent of recent vintages 2010 and 2011–this vintage will be one to enjoy immediately and for the long term.
Beautiful aromatics of blackberry, cinnamon stick, dried cranberry and cedar jump from the glass. The mouth is supple with strawberry, balsamic reduction, lavender, thyme and cocoa powder; finishing with soft tannins laced with black licorice.
Glazed Roast Salmon with Beets and Spring vegetables.
Tavola Pinot Noir is produced from Ponzi’s LIVE Certified Sustainable Avellana Vineyard, as well as other sustainably-grown vineyards in the Chehalem Mountains, Yamhill-Carlton and Eola-Amity Hills AVAs.
Suggested Retail Price
Vinous Media - "Deep red. Ripe, mineral-tinged red berry and cherry scents, along with a hint of succulent herbs and building spiciness. Smooth and open-knit, showing very good depth to the bitter cherry and black raspberry flavors, which take on a smoky quality with aeration. Shows the forward character of the vintage and finishes long and supple, with repeating spiciness and gentle, even tannins. (20% new French oak)"
Other Wines by this Producer
Ponzi Vineyards Pinot Noir Reserve is the epitome of restrained power. It hails primarily from estate grown fruit on Laurelwood soils in the Chehalem Mountains, including from some of Oregon’s oldest vines. This remarkably complex wine is handcrafted with tremendous attention to detail.
The "classic" representation of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, this wine encapsulates the experience, innovation, top vineyard sources, and expertise of the pioneering Ponzi family. Among the first to make Pinot Noir in Oregon and the United States and, since the start, among the very best.
The Ponzi family has dedicated over 25 years to innovation in farming and winemaking to develop Oregon Chardonnay's place in the world. Luisa Ponzi's formative experiences working in Burgundy in the early 1990s guide her vision of producing complex and ageworthy Chardonnay.
One of the original and most recognized Oregon and U.S. Pinot Gris producers, Ponzi was a major influence in establishing Pinot Gris as the first quality white grape variety in Oregon. Ponzi's Pinot Gris is an irresistably aromatic and expressive wine, and serves as a first encounter for many wine drinkers with Oregon wines and the Ponzi estate.
For decades, Ponzi Abetina Vineyard, which sits on a spectacular east-facing slope born in 1975 as a clonal experiment for Oregon State University, has produced an impressive Pinot noir with unique and complex flavors. So enthralled by the success at Abetina, in 2005 an exact duplicate was planted at Ponzi’s stunning Aurora Vineyard. The experimental collection of more than 20 Pinot noir clones was planted to the same soil, elevation and aspect, as Abetina. With the added element of youth, the Abetina 2 block at Aurora Vineyard gives this cuvée unparalleled vibrancy and depth.
Oregon Chardonnays present an unparalleled combination of bright acidity, texture and freshness of fruit on the mid-palate. Winemaker Luisa Ponzi’s goal is to allow the wines to express these characteristics each vintage through single vineyard expressions. Planted in 2006, Avellana yields a richer, weightier style of Chardonnay as compared to the Aurora single vineyard wine.
Pinot blanc was planted at Aurora Vineyard in the early 1990s, taking advantage of an ideal portion of the 80-acre site. This versatile white wine is a wonderful alternative to Pinot gris. Beautiful floral aromas of jasmine and magnolia mingle with notes of lychee, lemongrass, beeswax and green tea mochi with a touch of cardamom. The textured mouth is reminiscent of shortbread and the freshness of rainwater and wet slate with bright, juicy acidity that encourages another sip.
With its first bottling in 2016, Ponzi Vineyard's remarkable Pinot noir from Madrona Vineyard showcases the consistently stunning fruit from these 30-year-old vine. It reveals a true sense of place in the bottle. The vineyard was named for the madrone trees which surround the 10-acre site and is own rooted Pommard clone. This stunning expression of the Willamette Valley is handcrafted with tremendous attention to detail.
Oregon Chardonnays present an unparalleled combination of bright acidity, texture and freshness of fruit on the mid-palate. Winemaker Luisa Ponzi’s goal is to allow the wines to express these characteristics each vintage through single vineyard expressions. Aurora yields an elegant wine with bright acidity and fruit.